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56  £V 

ie  Coming  of 
The  Slav 

Charles  Eugene  Edwards 


BY      J 

Author  of 
"Protestantism  in  Poland"  and  "Prayers  from  Calvin" 



Copyright,  1921 

Printed  in  the  United  States  of  America. 






Preface 7 

Foreword 10 

Introduction 13 

Chapter  I.     Historical  Aspects 17 

Dr.  Washburn.  Survey.  Slav  languages.  Czechoslo 
vakia's  situation.  Need  of  the  gospel.  Lord  Radstock 
and  Pashkof.  The  Reformation. 

Chapter  II.     Colportage 38 

Colportage     throughout     Slavdom,     results,     anecdotes. 
Whittier.     History  of  colportage.     Bible  societies. 
The  Apocrypha. 

Chapter  III.     Early  Missions  Among  Slavs 73 

Statements  by  Drs.  Montgomery,  McEwan,  Losa,  Boyce, 
S.  J.  Fisher. 

Chapter  IV.     Encouragements 91 

Mr.  Prudky's  journeys.  Great  accessions  in  Czecho 
slovakia.  President  Masaryk.  Monthly  concert  of 
prayer  for  missions.  American  Hussite  Society. 

Supplement 117 

Bibliography.    Area  of  Slavdom.    Lord's  Prayer  in  three 
languages.     Justification   for  evangelical   missions. 
Slav  periodicals,  versions  of  Scripture.     Letters  of 
Drs.   Elterich   and   Hays.     Mr.    Prudky's   journeys 
continued.     Statistics.     Comenius, 

President  of  the  Republic  of  Czechoslovakia 


THE  following  preface  was  written  during  the  busy 
sessions  of  the  Pan-Presbyterian  Council  at  Pittsburgh 
in  September,  1921,  by  Dr.  F.  Zilka.  He  is  a  professor 
in  the  Evangelical  Theological  Faculty  of  John  Huss 
in  the  University  of  Prague,  and  was  decorated  by 
the  Sorbonne  of  Paris.  Rev.  J.  V.  Kovar  translated  it 
from  the  Bohemian;  and  it  is  worthy  of  mention  that 
Mr.  Kovar  traveled  thousands  of  miles  in  Siberia  with 
Czechoslovak  troops.  The  writer  wishes  here  to  express 
cordial  gratitude  for  the  kindness  of  Prof.  Zilka,  and 
of  Mr.  Kovar.  

It  is  not  customary  for  a  foreigner  to  call  the  atten 
tion  of  the  reading  public  to  a  book  by  a  native  author, 
and  it  was  only  with  great  hesitation  that  ^yielded  to 
Dr.  Edwards'  request  to  write  these  few  sentences. 
In  explanation  of  this  unusual  step,  and  at  the  same 
time  in  justification  of  it,  is  the  fact  that  the  subject 
of  the  book  is  far  more  alien  to  American  readers  than 
to  myself.  To  me,  as  a  Slav  and  a  Czech,  the  matter 
with  which  Dr.  Edwards  is  dealing  is  indeed  near, 
very  near  to  my  heart.  For  this  reason,  though  with 
some  doubts,  I  consented  to  violate  custom,  and  as  a 
foreigner  address  a  few  words  to  American  readers. 

Let  me  say,  right  at  the  beginning,  that  the  book  of 
Dr.  Edwards  bears  traces  of  its  American  origin;  it  is 
specifically  American.  I  think  that  any  Slav  would 
deal  with  the  subject  in  a  different  way.  But  for 
American  readers,  and  for  that  matter  the  English- 
reading  public  in  general,  the  American  way  of  grasping 
the  whole  problem,  the  American  selection  and  arrange 
ment  of  the  material  is  an  advantage,  because  it  takes 



into  account  the  interest  of  an  American  reader,  and 
responds  to  his  requirements.  And  if  Slavic  readers 
will  not  find  in  the  book  everything  that  they  would 
like  to  see,  no  doubt  they  will  appreciate  the  undeniable 
fact  that  Dr.  Edwards  is  the  first  to  draw  attention  to 
an  important  world  problem,  and  to  turn  toward  it 
the  eyes  of  the  other  hemisphere  in  this  way  and  from 
this  standpoint. 

The  interest  of  Dr.  Edwards  in  the  Slav  was  not 
awakened  by  the  World  War.  When  eleven  years  ago 
I  had  the  pleasure  of  meeting  him,  I  found  that  he  had 
already  a  crystallized  understanding  of  European 
Slavdom.  Dr.  Edwards'  attempt  to  contribute  to  the 
solution  of  the  Slav  problem  is  not  therefore,  as  with 
some,  of  a  very  recent  date,  and  has  not  been  called 
into  existence  only  by  the  latest  events,  through  which 
the  Slavs  were  forced  upon  the  attention  both  of 
America  and  of  the  rest  of  the  world.  It  was  not  the 
collapse  of  the  Russian  front  which  caused  a  turn  in 
the  war  and  placed  upon  the  Allies  new  and  heavier 
tasks,  after  Russia  had  greatly  helped  by  stemming 
the  first  and  strongest  and  most  dangerous  impact  of 
the  German  steam  roller  in  the  east,  just  as  France 
and  England  did  in  the  west;  nor  was  it  the  present 
Bolshevik  regime  in  Russia,  and  the  horrors  of  famine 
and  pestilence  that  drew  the  mind  of  Dr.  Edwards 
to  the  distant  east.  If  I  am  right,  it  was  on  one  hand 
a  purely  scientific  interest  in  unknown  nations,  and 
on  the  other,  the  practical  problem  of  a  polyglot  immi 
gration  to  the  United  States,  the  Slav  immigrants 
numbering  millions,  that  led  Dr.  Edwards  more  than 
ten  years  ago  to  write  his  first  publications  about  Slavs. 

Since  that  time  his  interest  in  Slavdom  has  not 
diminished,  but  rather  increased.  This  shows  that 
English-speaking  readers  in  general,  and  Americans  in 
particular,  have  at  hand  an  outcome  of  a  theoretic  as 


well  as  a  practical  study  of  this  subject.  Some  portions 
of  this  book  are  the  first  attempt  to  throw  light  upon 
the  Slav  problem,  and  upon  its  significance  for  the 
world  at  large.  It  has  its  own  viewpoint,  which  is 
evident  in  the  conception  and  arrangement  of  the 
material.  In  a  book  of  such  limited  proportions,  no 
one  will  try  to  find  a  solution  of  all  phases  of  the  Slav 
problem,  but  I  think  that  none  has  been  overlooked. 
The  book  itself  is  a  proof  that  it  does  not  contain  all 
that  Dr.  Edwards  knows  about  Slavs.  Much  will 
depend  upon  the  reception  that  this  book  may  receive 
from  its  readers,  to  encourage  him  to  tell  more,  perhaps 
from  another  angle.  Let  the  book  speak  for  itself,  for 
its  author,  for  Slavdom. 

I  desire  to  call  attention  to  one  thing  only:  the 
problem  of  the  Slav  is  not  merely  a  European  and 
Asiatic  problem;  it  is  a  world  problem.  Great  Britain 
and  America  are  directly  interested,  the  former  by  its 
proximity  to  Slavdom  in  Asia,  the  other  because  it  is  a 
neighbor  across  the  Pacific,  which  does  not  divide  but 
unites,  is  not  a  barrier  as  it  used  to  be,  but  a  bridge. 
At  the  same  time  the  Slav  problem  reaches  the  heart  of 
Europe  and  dominates  the  whole  of  its  southeastern 
portion,  a  region  where  three  continents  meet  and 
many  interests  intermingle.  It  is  and  will  be  a  world 
problem  indeed. 

I  hope  that  the  love  and  enthusiasm  of  this  dear 
friend  of  Slavs,  which  prompted  him  to  undertake  the 
writing  of  the  book,  will  be  rewarded  by  a  kind  reception 
on  the  part  of  the  reading  public.  I  further  hope  that 
readers  will  be  stimulated  to  a  more  thorough  study  of  a 
question  which  is  inevitably  going  to  be  a  deeply  burning 
question  in  the  near  future. 

Prague,  Czechoslovakia. 


THE  World  War  began  with  the  Slavs,  Serbia  in  the 
foreground,  Russia  soon  involved.  The  entire  course 
of  it,  especially  many  of  its  crises,  was  largely  affected 
by  Slav  successes  or  failures.  The  achievements  of  th? 
Czechoslovak  army  shone  more  brilliantly  by  contrast 
with  their  dark  background,  the  collapse  of  Russia. 
The  leading  spirit  in  the  organization  of  that  army, 
and  subsequently  in  the  formation  of  the  Czechoslovak 
Republic  of  which  he  is  the  head,  President  T.  G. 
Masaryk,  emerged  as  the  most  popular  and  successful 
statesman  of  Europe.  The  War  was  a  new  revelatior 
of  the  Slavs,  especially  to  America.  Christian  America 
should  appreciate  the  lesson,  and  should  know  the 
importance  of  evangelizing  Slavdom.  The  Slav  family 
of  nations  has  generally  been  omitted  from  consideration 
in  the  great  missionary  conventions  of  the  past  genera 
tion.  If  this  habit  continues,  it  will  seriously  impair 
the  grand  strategy,  as  soldiers  express  it,  of  the  world's 
evangelization.  The  logic  for  evangelizing  the  vast 
Slav  lands  of  Europe  and  Asia,  which  are  neighbors  to 
the  bulk  of  the  world's  population,  is  the  logic  which 
justifies  the  Reformation  itself,  or  the  same  as  the 
arguments  for  evangelizing  Latin  America,  which  were 
thoroughly  demonstrated  by  the  Panama  Congress. 

No  Slav  land  has  so  many  evangelicals  as  Czecho 
slovakia.  No  other  is  rated  so  high  for  intelligence 
and  culture.  No  other  has  so  intense  an  admiration 
for  its  great  Reformer,  John  Huss.  Thus  there  is  "a 
spark  of  Protestantism  in  every  Bohemian."  A  far 
greater  movement  than  "Los  von  Rom"  ("away  from 
Rome")  of  some  years  ago,  is  progressing  in  Bohemia 




and  Moravia  toward  the  ideals  of  Huss  and  the  Hussites. 
America  helped  Czechoslovakia  to  win  her  present 
liberty,  after  a  thralldom  of  centuries.  Christian 
America  should  now  help  these  seekers  after  a  Saviour 
to  stand  fast  in  the  liberty  wherewith  Christ  has  made 
us  free. 

No  Christians  in  America  have  done  more  for  Slavs 
than  the  Presbyterians,  especially  in  the  work  of 
colportage,  which  is  illustrated  in  portions  of  this  book. 
No  presbytery  has  done  more  for  the  Slavs  in  its  bounds, 
also  for  Czechoslovakia,  than  Pittsburgh  Presbytery, 
under  the  guidance  of  its  superintendents,  Dr.  Vaclav 
Losa,  and  the  late  Dr.  George  W.  Montgomery.  Dr. 
Montgomery's  death  was  a  sore  bereavement  for  this 
cause.  Dr.  W.  L.  McEwan,  who  was  instrumental  in 
sending  the  call  to  Dr.  Losa  to  begin  work  for  Slavs  in 
this  presbytery,  has  proposed  the  best  method  for 
aiding  Czechoslovakia,  through  the  "American  Hussite 
Society"  which  he  organized,  and  of  which  he  is  the 
first  president.  Dr.  Losa  is  its  corresponding  secretary, 
with  his  office  in  the  Fulton  Building,  Pittsburgh.  If  a 
multitude  of  members  could  be  enrolled  in  this  society, 
this  new  Hussite  movement  might  not  only  pervade 
Czechoslovakia,  but  Slavdom  also.  Then,  with  Slav 
dom  as  a  base,  the  evangelization  of  the  world  would 
be  hastened.  It  is  the  purpose  of  this  book  to  turn 
attention  to  this  part  of  the  Christian  conquest,  and 
awaken  prayer  for  so  glorious  a  consummation ! 


WE  have  abundance  of  books  on  the  evangelization 
of  Latin  America  and  of  Latin  Europe.  There  are  the 
three  volumes  of  the  Panama  Congress,  works  on  Mex 
ico  and  South  America,  some  prepared  as  mission-study 
class  books.  There  is  George  Sorrow's  "The  Bible  in 
Spain,"  recognized  as  a  classic  of  English  literature. 


There  are  books  about  the  McAll  Mission  in  France, 
about  French  Protestants,  about  Waldensians  in  Italy, 
and  so  on.  The  population  of  the  Latin  world  may 
exceed  a  hundred  and  seventy  millions;  and  the  world 
probably  has  as  many  millions  of  Slavs.  But  precious 
little  has  been  written  about  the  evangelization  of 
Slavdom;  and  this  work  is  probably  the  only  book 
written  from  a  Presbyterian  standpoint  on  the  subject. 
In  English  we  have  five  words  meaning  the  same 
thing:  Slav,  Slavian,  Slavic,  Slavonic,  Slavonian, 
though  the  latter  may  refer  to  Slavonia,  a  crownland 
of  Hungary.  It  is  superfluous  to  add  a  sixth  word, 
"Slavish,"  which  is  a  misspelled  German  word,  and 
also  objectionable,  as  it  might  be  mistaken  for  "slavish." 
Slavdom,  "the  domain  or  sphere  of  influence  of  the 
Slavs,"  has  equivalent  expressions,  as  "the  Slavic 
nations"  or  "the  Slavonic  world." 


MANY  Slavs  have  dreamed  of  a  day  when  Slav 
nationalities  shall  have  a  greater  prominence  in  the 
world's  affairs  than  has  ever  been  recorded  in  history 
for  the  Latin  or  Teutonic  races.  This  hope  seemed 
warranted  by  the  progress  of  Russia. 

But  Czechoslovakia,  from  a  religious  point  of  view, 
may  hold  this  key  of  promise.  Survey  the  vast  extent 
of  Slavdom.  Note  the  strategic  position  of  Slav  nations, 
in  closer  contact  with  each  other,  and  with  the  masses 
of  the  world's  population,  than  are  the  widespread 
Latin  nations.  Note  the  advantages  in  religious  work 
from  the  similarity  of  Slav  tongues.  Then,  too,  it  is 
easy  to  perceive  that  with  Bohemia's  central  situation 
in  Europe,  with  the  intelligence  of  its  people,  with  its 
language,  having  some  possibilities  of  a  "world  lan 
guage"  in  dealing  with  other  Slavs,  it  could  become  a 
power  for  righteousness  and  peace,  if  it  is  a  propagator 
of  the  gospel. 

Russia  has  been  considered  a  menace  to  India,  the 
more  so  if  Germany  controls  its  destinies.  But  if  a 
new  Reformation  spreads  through  Czechoslovakia,  and 
onward  into  Russia,  the  menace  can  be  changed  into  a 
blessing.  Every  evangelical  Slav  can  testify  that 
Slavdom  needs  the  gospel;  and  the  arguments  which 
prove  that  the  gospel  should  be  given  to  Latin  America 
are  entirely  applicable  to  the  Slavs.  These  are  demon 
strated  by  conditions  prevailing  among  Russian  priests, 
and  by  the  situation  revealed  in  Russia  through  the 
labors  of  Lord  Radstock  and  his  convert,  Pashkof. 
Finally,  the  history  of  the  Reformation  among  two 
Slav  peoples,  the  Bohemians  or  Czechs,  and  the  Poles, 



which  was  stopped  only  by  brute  force,  massacres,  and 
exile,  shows  that  the  modern  missionary  movement,  an 
expansion  of  the  Reformation,  is  the  hope  and  promise 
for  all  Slavdom. 

One  form  of  evangelical  effort  has  been  applied  to 
all  of  Slavdom,  and  among  Slavs  in  America,  namely, 
colportage.  Bibles  or  Testaments  were  prepared  in 
some  Slav  languages  before  the  Authorized  Version 
appeared  in  English.  Experiences  in  such  work  at 
Pittsburgh,  and  by  colporteurs  of  the  Presbyterian 
Board  of  Publication,  illustrate  it  for  America;  and  the 
annual  reports  of  the  British  and  Foreign  Bible  Society 
furnish  anecdotes  of  it  in  Slavdom.  There  is  greater 
hindrance  for  colportage  among  Slavs  dominated  by 
Rome  than  among  the  Greek  Orthodox.  Not  a  Slav 
nation  is  without  its  converts  and  its  Bible  readers. 
And  everywhere,  for  instance,  among  Italian  Walden- 
sians,  colporteurs  are  often  pioneers  for  established 
missions.  A  difficulty  encountered  by  colporteurs  in 
Europe  is  that  Catholics,  Greek  Orthodox,  and  German 
Lutherans  insist  upon  having  the  Apocrypha.  Are  the 
great  Bible  societies  right  in  excluding  the  Apocrypha 
from  their  publications?  They  certainly  are,  for  the 
Apocrypha  contain  ridiculous  or  hurtful  errors;  and 
these  facts  should  be  more  widely  known. 

American  evangelical  missions  among  Slavs  are 
examples  for  similar  enterprises  in  all  Slavdom.  For 
years  the  Presbyterian  roll  of  Slav  workers  has  been 
longer  than  that  of  any  other  denomination.  This 
statement  should  occasion  no  absurd  pride,  but  pro 
voke  to  love  and  good  works.  In  the  Czechoslovak 
Review,  July,  1921,  an  account  is  given  of  Dr.  Vincent 
Pisek's  work  in  New  York  City  where  he  was  ordained 
and  installed  pastor  of  the  Jan  Hus  Presbyterian 
Church  in  1883.  In  1887  he  induced  three  theological 
students  to  come  to  America,  Drs.  Pokorny,  Bren, 


and  Losa,  who  eventually  labored  in  Bohemian  settle 
ments  in  western  states.  This  work  of  theirs  has 
since  grown  into  two  presbyteries.* 

Not  in  rural  communities  only,  but  in  cities  also, 
have  Bohemian  churches  been  organized;  and  Presby 
terians  in  Chicago,  New  York  City,  and  Cedar  Rapids 
have  erected  probably  the  finest  evangelical  Bohemian 
church  buildings  in  America.  It  has  been  published 
that  Chicago  is  the  third  Bohemian  city,  next  to  Vienna 
and  Prague,  and  the  third  Polish  city,  next  to  Lodz 
and  Warsaw.  Suppose  it  be  debated  whether  it  stands 
second  only  to  Prague  as  a  Bohemian  city,  and  second 
only  to  Warsaw  as  a  Polish  city.  Still  for  years  it  has 
been  undeniable  that  outside  of  Slavdom  there  is  no 
greater  Slav  center  than  Chicago,  and  scores  of  Ameri 
can  towns  have  Slav  colonies.  In  St.  Louis,  for  years, 
Rev.  George  Wales  King  has  interested  Presbyterians 
of  that  city  and  also  those  of  adjacent  Illinois  districts 
in  Slavs,  especially  Balkan  Slavs.  He  has  devoted 
time  and  energy  to  the  details  of  colportage,  and  in 
many  a  bulletin  has  he  advocated  all  such  missionary 
work.  In  Dubuque,  Iowa,  and  Bloomfield,  New  Jersey, 
the  Presbyterian  Church  has  schools,  originally  German, 
where  for  many  years  Slav  instructors  and  students 
have  been  enrolled  among  other  nationalities. 

Presbyterian  Slovak  work  has  been  centered  in 
Pennsylvania,  its  Polish  work  in  Baltimore,  its  Ruth- 
enian  work  in  Pittsburgh  and  some  eastern  cities.  To 
describe  all  this  fully  would  be  to  traverse  the  ground 
of  the  late  Dr.  McLanahan's  book,  "Our  People  of 
Foreign  Speech,"  or  on  a  smaller  scale,  the  appendix 
to  Dr.  Grose's  "Aliens  or  Americans?"  This  plan 

*  Statistics,  1921:  Central  West  (Bohemian)  Presbytery:  Min 
isters,  20.  Churches,  21.  Communicants,  1939.  Infants  baptized, 
129.  Sunday-school  members,  1343;  Southwest  Bohemian  Presby 
tery:  Ministers,  9.  Churches,  12.  Communicants,  479.  Infants 
baptized,  52.  S.  S.  members,  526. 


requires  a  periodical  revision,  or  even  a  series,  like 
"Sion,"  the  Bohemian  Yearbook  edited  by  Dr.  Losa. 
A  large  space  is  here  given  to  Pittsburgh  Presbytery's 
work,  partly  because  of  its  remarkable  features  and  its 
methods,  the  same  as  those  of  foreign  missions,  and 
partly  because  this  book  owes  much  to  the  cooperation 
of  numerous  friends  in  that  region. 

It  is  almost  unknown  to  Americans  that  Bohemian 
colonies,  some  having  Reformed  churches,  are  found  in 
parts  of  Russia,  also  in  regions  dominated  by  Poles, 
and  a  few  in  Jugoslavia.  Here  are  possible  centers  for 
aggressive  missionary  work  in  regions  of  Slavdom  at 
various  distances  from  Czechoslovakia.  The  journeys 
of  Mr.  Prudky  among  these  settlements  are  accordingly 
significant.  In  Poland  are  two  Reformed  synods  of 
Polish  churches,  with  which  these  Bohemian  churches 
are  in  correspondence.  The  overwhelming  accessions 
to  evangelical  churches  in  Bohemia  and  Moravia  have 
had  no  parallel  in  Europe  for  centuries.  At  such  a 
juncture  it  greatly  aids  their  cause  that  the  President 
of  their  Republic,  Thomas  G.  Masaryk,  is  one  of  their 
number.  His  apt  quotation  from  the  great  Bohemian 
reformer,  Comenius,  when  he  addressed  the  Czecho 
slovak  National  Assembly,  reveals  his  spirit. 

In  conclusion,  two  things  are  always  urged  in  plans 
for  missionary  progress:  prayer,  and  money  or  its 
equivalent.  Summing  up  the  practical  things  that 
American  Christians  could  do  for  Czechoslovakia,  one 
is  to  give  to  it  and  to  Slavdom  some  place  in  the  topics 
for  the  Monthly  Concert  of  Prayer  for  Missions ;  another 
is  to  form  branches  of  the  "American  Hussite  Society" 
which  has  been  created  for  the  purpose  of  aiding  this 
truly  Hussite  movement. 

Chapter  I 

THE  LIVING  AGE,  in  February,  1898,  published  an 
article  under  the  caption,  "The  Coming  of  the  Slav" 
by  Dr.  George  Washburn,  who  was  at  that  time  president 
of  Robert  College,  Constantinople.  He  first  gives  the 
substance  of  an  address  delivered  not  long  before  by 
a  young  Slav: 

"The  Latin  and  Teutonic  races  have  had  their  day, 
and  they  have  failed  to  establish  a  truly  Christian  civili 
zation.  They  have  done  great  things  in  the  organization 
of  society,  in  the  development  of  material  wealth,  in 
literature,  arts,  and  science,  and  especially  in  recog 
nizing  and  securing  in  some  degree  the  rights  of  the 
individual  man;  but  they  have  exalted  the  material 
above  the  spiritual,  and  made  Mammon  their  god. 
They  have  lost  the  nobler  aspirations  of  youth  and  are 
governed  now  by  the  sordid  calculations  of  old  age. 
We  wait  the  coming  of  the  Slav  to  regenerate  Europe, 
establish  the  principle  of  universal  brotherhood  and 
the  Kingdom  of  Christ  on  earth." 

Discussing  this  he  remarks:  "If  it  were  the  fancy  of 
a  single  brain  it  would  not  be  worth  noticing;  but  as 
it  is,  in  fact,  the  dream  of  a  hundred  million  brains  in 
Europe,  it  has  some  interest  for  those  who  are  to  be 
regenerated  by  the  coming  of  the  Slav.  Englishmen 
and  Americans  used  to  have  such  dreams,  and  some 
how,  without  much  wisdom  or  much  conscious  direction 
on  the  part  of  their  rulers,  these  dreams  have  got  them 
selves  fulfilled  in  a  measure.  If  we  have  failed  to 
establish  a  truly  Christian  civilization  in  the  world, 
and  have  left  something  for  the  Slavs  to  do,  it  is,  per- 



haps,  our  fault;  but  we  have  certainly  done  something 
toward  the  evolution  of  society.  .  .  .  The  Latin 
races  had  certainly  failed  to  realize  their  dreams  when 
the  Teutonic  races  took  up  the  work  and  put  new  life 
into  it.  If  now  the  Slavs  can  complete  it,  so  much  the 
better  for  us  and  the  world,  however  painful  the  process 
may  be.  The  Latin  races  have  lost  nothing  worth 
having  by  our  leadership,  and  if  the  Slavs  arc  to  bring 
in  a  truly  Christian  civilization  and  universal  brother 
hood,  then  Latin,  Teuton,  and  Slav  will  share  alike  in 
all  the  happy  results  which  'must  follow.' '  Dr.  Wash- 
burn's  conclusion  was  that  "for  the  present  the  coming 
of  the  Slav  means  the  extension  and  increase  of  the 
political  power  of  Russia." 

Since  that  date  much  water  has  flowed  under  Slav 
bridges.  The  rise  and  liberation  of  Czechoslovakia  was 
a  remarkable  phenomenon  of  the  War.  Without  ven 
turing  to  prophesy  that  this  event  foreshadows  a 
universal  Slav  advancement,  it  is  certain  that  for 
centuries  Czechoslovakia  has  had  no  such  opportunity 
as  that  afforded  by  its  new  freedom;  and  that  this  is  of 
profound  significance  with  reference  to  its  evangeliza 
tion,  together  with  that  of  other  Slav  countries.  More 
over,  this  evangelization  will  hasten  the  same  Christian 
work  throughout  the  world. 

A  glance  at  maps  of  continents  would  show  the  folly 
or  wrong  of  any  program  for  world  evangelization  which 
omits  Slavdom.  Europe  and  Asia  contain  most  of  the 
world's  population.  Supposing  a  conqueror  to  gain  the 
mastery  of  these  two  continents,  the  domination  of 
the  world  might  seem  an  easy  problem.  Such  visions 
have  fascinated  military  minds,  will  probably  do  so 
again,  and  are  suggestive  for  the  statesmen  of  Imman- 
uel's  kingdom.  Russian  arid  Polish  dominions,  Czecho 
slovakia,  Jugoslavia,  and  if  we  note  its  language,  not 
its  racial  antecedents,  Bulgaria — that  is  Slavdom.  In 


its  sphere  of  influence,  at  least,  as  noted  by  anxious 
diplomats,  are  Japan,  Korea  or  Chosen,  Manchuria, 
China,  Tibet,  India,  Persia,  Asia  Minor,  some  other 
Asiatic  countries  also  being  sensitive  to  Slav  power; 
and  in  Europe,  the  Turks,  Greeks,  Italians,  Hungarians, 
Germans,  Scandinavians,  and  others  meet  the  Slavs 
in  war  and  peace.  England  and  France  were  allies  of 
Slavs.  This  survey  of  nations  aggregates  possibly  a 
billion  of  souls. 

A  hint  of  danger  to  the  world's  peace,  also  to  the 
cause  of  evangelical  missions,  may  arouse  us  to  the 
importance  of  including  Slavdom  in  any  statesmanlike 
scheme  for  world  evangelization.  In  the  Nineteenth 
Century,  October  1919,  page  786,  Herr  Werner  Daya's 
book,  with  its  subtitle,  "Russian  Asia  as  Germany's 
Economic  Peace- Aim"  is  quoted: 

"For  the  first  time  in  history  the  closing-in  naval 
policy  of  England,  which  for  centuries  has  held  the 
mastery  of  the  world  by  a  uniform  concentration  of 
all  her  forces  in  one  direction,  will  be  countered  by  an 
equally  comprehensive  and  equally  powerful  concen 
tration  of  an  Overland  policy."  Then,  if  Germany 
controls  Russian  Asia,  "we  should  be  able  in  any 
future  war  to  sweep  down  upon  India  and  drive  the 
English  out  of  Asia  into  the  sea."  What  then  would 
become  of  the  great  work  of  British  and  American 
missions  in  that  Indian  Empire,  built  up  for  genera 
tions,  and  ere  long  to  gain,  as  has  been  fondly  hoped, 
several  millions  of  converts?  America  can  sympathize 
with  the  danger  perceived  by  British  statesmen,  when 
they  stopped  the  propaganda  of  German  missionaries 
in  India,  and  removed  them  from  their  fields.  Will 
Germany,  approaching  India  through  Slavdom,  turn 
the  tables  upon  Anglo-Saxons,  and  expel  all  our  mission 
aries?  On  the  other  hand,  let  America  follow  Christ, 
believing  that  he  is  Lord  of  peace  and  war,  and  that  his 


command  to  seek  first  the  Kingdom  of  God  and  his 
righteousness,  will  add  political  advantages  to  the 
nations  that  obey  it.  Then  another  and  expanded 
Reformation  may,  through  the  grace  of  God,  occur  in 
Slavdom  as  well  as  in  India.  The  Reformation  defeated 
the  plans  and  power  of  those  who  thought  that  the 
dominion  of  the  world  was  in  their  hands.  Modern 
evangelical  missions  have  the  same  doctrines,  purpose, 
methods,  and  results  as  those  of  the  Reformation. 
America  is  the  child  of  the  Reformation,  and  owes  its 
common  schools  to  John  Calvin.  Let  America  be  a 
worker  together  with  God,  and  while  she  redoubles  her 
aid  for  India,  let  her  aid  evangelical  brethren  in  Slav 
dom,  whose  spiritual  ancestors  were  the  first  Reformers. 
Thus  a  danger  will  become  a  victory  which  will  speed 
the  salvation  of  the  world. 

At^first  sight,  the  great  array  of  publications  that  con 
cern  Slavdom  would  indicate  that  it  has  no  solidarity. 
History  records  that  Poles  have  fought  Russians.  Their 
churches  are  different,  though  their  ideas  of  religion 
may  be  much  the  same,  the  reverse  of  evangelical. 
Serbians  fought  Bulgarians,  though  both  have  Greek 
Orthodox  churches,  which  are  the  most  numerous  in  a 
summary  of  Slavdom.  Greeks  themselves  have  fought 
Greek  Orthodox  Slavs.  The  Greek  and  Roman 
churches  among  Slavs  are  opposed,  excluding  each 
other's  members.  The  unity  of  Slavdom  is  further 
broken  by  a  singular  compromise,  the  Greek  Catholic 
organizations,  adhering  to  the  pope  but  without  a 
Latin  ritual,  whose  married  priests  have  surprised  the 
Irish  Catholics  in  America.  In  smaller  numbers  there 
are  Protestant  Slavs  and  Mohammedan  Slavs.  Some 
statesmen  have  feared  Pan-Slavism;  others,  aware  of 
these  divisions,  see  as  much  diversity  of  feeling  among 
Slavs  as  among  other  Europeans. 

Yet  there  is  a  solidarity,  too  little  understood  and  of 


practical  importance,  due  to  the  resemblance  of  Slav 
languages.  A  Bohemian  can  learn  to  read  Polish  or 
Russian  in  a  month.  The  Slovak  language  has  some 
grammatical  forms  more  like  the  tongue  of  John  Huss 
than  the  modern  Bohemian.  There  has  been  no 
distinct  Slovak  Bible,  and  where  they  were  allowed  to 
read  it,  they  have  used  the  famous  Kralicka  Bohemian 
Bible.  Grammars  have  been  prepared  for  Croatians 
and  Serbians,  who  speak  the  same  language,  a  Croatian 
page  in  Roman  type,  the  opposite  Serbian  page  in  a 
modified  Russian  alphabet.  No  wonder  the  Allies 
approve  the  experiment  of  combining  them  with  the 
Slovenes,  in  one  government  of  Jugoslavia.  The 
Russian  alphabet  with  modifications  is  used  by  Rus 
sians,  Ruthenians,  Serbians,  Bulgarians,  and  the 
Roman  alphabet,  with  diacritical  marks,  by  Bohemians, 
Slovaks,  Poles,  Croatians  and  Slovenes.  But,  as  spoken, 
this  family  of  tongues  has  striking  resemblances.  Their 
declensions  of  nouns,  their  pronouns,  prepositions, 
adverbs,  and  some  common  words  of  their  vocabulary, 
are  features  of  the  family  likeness.  "Mamma,  give  me 
a  kolatch,"  a  little  cake  with  preserves  in  the  center, 
is  a  word  universally  understood  by  Slavs.  Seton- 
Watson,  states  that  a  Slovak  peddler  "can  wander  from 
Pressburg  to  Vladivostock  without  encountering  seri 
ous  linguistic  difficulties." 

Take  the  Gospel  of  John  as  a  language  lesson.  Let 
a  Pole  hear  it  read  in  Bohemian,  or  a  Bohemian  hear 
it  in  Polish.  It  is  profound  in  theology,  of  doctrinal 
importance,  but  simple,  with  many  repetitions  in 
vocabulary,  having  about  eight  hundred  words  of 
common  life,  a  good  start  for  a  beginner  in  any  language. 
With  attention  the  Pole  or  the  Bohemian  recognizes 
so  many  words  of  the  other's  language  that  he  soon 
comprehends  whole  paragraphs  or  chapters.  With 
varying  facility,  perhaps  corresponding  to  the  relative 


distance  of  other  Slavs  from  Czechoslovakia  or  from 
Poland,  they  would  comprehend  the  pronunciation 
and  vocabulary  of  all  other  Slav  nations. 

Here  is  an  interesting  consequence  from  these 
resemblances.  In.  Russian  churches  the  ritual  is 
recited  in  "a  dead  language,"  and  it  has  been  sup 
posedly  as  dead  as  the  Latin  of  the  Romish  ritual. 
Cyril  and  Methodius,  the  first  missionaries  among 
Slavs,  used  that  language  of  the  Russian  ritual  a 
millennium  ago,  a  language  now  no  longer  spoken. 
Seemingly  contradictory  statements  about  it  need  not 
puzzle  us.  Stupid,  inattentive  hearers  may  not  com 
prehend  it.  Cultured  or  attentive  listeners,  hearing  it 
frequently,  recognize  the  words  as  they  would  from 
any  other  Slav  tongue,  and,  with  profound  interest  in  a 
language  made  venerable  by  religious  use  for  centuries, 
proudly  declare  that  they  understand  it  all.  Anglo- 
Saxon  Gospels  are  also  traced  to  early  centuries,  and 
are  part  of  a  course  in  English  study;  yet  it  is  doubtful 
if  any  Englishman  could  understand  them  when  read 
as  easily  as  Slavs  comprehend  their  ancient  ritual. 

But  there  are  consequences  more  practical  and 
important.  Dr.  V.  Losa,  a  Bohemian,  undertook 
mission  work  in  Pittsburgh  Presbytery  in  1900.  He 
was  in  contact  from  the  first  with  Bohemians,  Slovaks, 
Ruthenians,  and  other  Slavs.  All  soon  understood 
Bohemian  preaching  and  joined  in  singing  Bohemian 
hymns.  In  his  prayer  meetings,  Scriptures  were  read, 
verse  about,  from  different  Slav  versions,  as  each  man 
preferred,  yet  this  variety  of  languages  made  no  con 
fusion,  but  added  interest  to  the  exercise.  For  years, 
with  growing  usefulness,  Dr.  Losa  demonstrated  that 
a  well-prepared  Bohemian  could  regard  the  entire 
mass  of  Slavs  as  his  mission  field,  especially  as  a  body 
of  well-trained  helpers  from  these  nationalities,  with 
the  divine  blessing,  was  formed  to  cooperate  with  him. 



Let  similar  methods  and  evangelical  zeal  be  applied  a 
thousandfold,  in  ten  thousand  communities  of  Slavdom, 
and  an  evangelical  solidarity,  the  best  in  the  world, 
will  be  created  among  all  Slav  nations. 

Czechoslovakia,  about  a  thousand  kilometers  long 
and  in  places  hardly  more  than  a  hundred  kilometers 
broad,  lies  in  the  heart  of  Europe,  equally  distant  from 
the  great  seas,  the  Adriatic,  the  North,  and  the  Baltic. 
It  has  four  divisions,  Bohemia,  Moravia,  Silesia,  and 
Slovakia,  and  later,  Rusinia,  a  district  of  Ruthenian 
Slavs  was  added,  by  request  of  its  people,  to  the  east 
of  Slovakia.  The  total  area  is  about  56,000  square 
miles,  and  the  population  fourteen  millions.  It  lies 
athwart  the  Berlin-Bagdad  Railway,  an  important  fact 
in  international  relations. 

Bohemia  is  supposed  to  get  its  name  from  an  ancient 
Celtic  tribe,  the  Boii,  who  also  gave  their  name  to 
Bavaria.  The  native  name  of  the  people,  the  Czechs, 
is  understood  to  be  derived  from  an  ancient  ancestor. 
The  country  is  the  westernmost  Slav  land  in  Europe, 
like  a  wedge  between  northern  and  southern  Germans, 
hence  a  battle  ground  of  the  two  races  for  centuries, 
and  long  before  Huss.  It  is  diamond-shaped,  the  points 
coinciding  nearly  with  those  of  the  compass.  Its  streams 
generally  flow  into  the  Moldau  (Vltava),  a  branch  of 
the  Elbe  flowing  northwestward,  a  channel  for  com 
merce  through  Saxony.  And  Bohemian  commerce 
follows  the  Danube  southeastward.  If  canals  connect 
the  Danube  with  the  Elbe,  the  Oder,  and  the  Vistula, 
Czechoslovakia  will  be  a  center  of  extensive  communi 
cations;  and  it  hopes  for  development  of  water  power. 
Bohemia's  area  is  rich,  half  of  it  under  cultivation; 
more  than  half  of  Austria's  revenue  from  taxation 
came  from  Bohemia.  There  are  mountain  walls  on 
three  sides,  but  no  distinct  ridge  toward  Moravia, 
where  the  people  speak  the  same  language,  and  have 


always  been  associated  with  Bohemians.  The  famous 
Moravian  Brethren  after  emigrating  to  Germany 
became  Germanized.  Brtinn  (Brno)  is  Moravia's 
capital;  and  Prague,  the  capital  of  Bohemia,  was  pro 
nounced  by  Humboldt  the  most  beautiful  inland  town 
of  Europe.  With  the  annexation  of  suburbs,  and  the 
influx  of  population  since  the  armistice,  Prague  may 
soon  contain  more'than  a  million  souls  and  become  more 
attractive  to  tourists  than  Vienna  or  Budapest.  Czecho 
slovakia  has  minerals,  also  mineral  springs,  such  as  the 
Karlsbad  and  Marienbad  resorts,  and  others,  some 
thirty-three  places  in  all,  visited  annually  by  hundreds 
of  thousands. 

Slovakia  in  its  first  year  of  liberty  made  a  rapid 
advance  in  education.  It  had  about  5000  teachers  in 
elementary  schools;  and  in  grammar,  secondary, 
technical,  and  university  grades,  about  600  Czech 
professors,  besides  many  Slovaks.  There  were  42 
secondary  schools,  with  nearly  4800  pupils.  There 
was  a  development  also  in  the  press  and  in  libraries. 
Bela  Kuhn,  in  1919,  cruelly  invaded  Slovakia  and  over 
ran  a  third  of  the  country,  which  lost  a  billion  crowrns; 
but  this  roused  and  united  the  patriotism  of  all 

The  great  need  of  Slavdom  is  the  gospel.  America's 
polyglot  immigration  gives  her  the  best  of  opportuni 
ties  for  planting  evangelical  missions  among  these 
people.  In  free  America  Bunyan's  vision  has  been 
fulfilled,  and  the  tyrant,  grinning  from  his  cave,  has 
not  been  able  to  molest  the  pilgrims  on  their  way  to  the 
Celestial  City.  The  two  main  groups  of  this  European 
throng  are  Latin  and  Slav.  The  Slav  converts,  some 
times  with  tears,  ask  Dr.  Losa  why  America's  religious 
privileges  could  not  be  enjoyed  in  Europe,  especially  in 
countries  that  never  had  a  Reformation.  Here  are 
evangelical  organizations  equipped  with  everything 

M  n>       n>          , 

C«W^E:  o  p. 



that  wealth  can  buy;  surely  the  gospel  cannot  be  an 
American  monopoly  which  is  not  for  Slavs. 

Christian  workers  soon  see  how  tactless  it  is  to  ques 
tion  the  sincerity  of  such  people.  It  is  like  a  question 
of  veracity,  which  quickly  kindles  an  American's 
indignation.  It  does  not  improve  matters  to  intimate 
that  their  former  state  of  superstition  of  formalism  is 
good  enough  for  their  class  of  immigrants.  If  such 
darkness  is  not  good  enough  for  Americans,  it  is  not 
good  for  any  nationality  on  earth!  True  converts 
become  epistles  "known  and  read  of  all  men."  He 
that  stole  steals  no  more,  but  works  with  his  hands 
that  he  may  have  to  give  to  him  that  needs.  Putting 
away  lying,  he  speaks  truth  with  his  neighbor.  No 
longer  drunk  with  wine,  he  is  filled  with  the  Holy 
Spirit.  He  knows,  too,  that  his  new  experience  is  due 
to  God's  power,  "according  to  that  working  of  the 
strength  of  his  might  which  he  wrought  in  Christ, 
when  he  raised  him  from  the  dead,  and  made  him  to 
sit  at  his  right  hand  in  the  heavenly  places,"  the  most 
sublime  of  illustrations.  Not  the  lapsed  only,  the 
apparently  susceptible,  but  the  bigoted  and  fanatic, 
like  Luther  himself,  may  be  the  subjects  of  divine 
grace,  should  be  offered  the  means  of  grace,  and  may 
become  the  best  of  accessions. 

Slav  converts  learn  how  America  pours  forth 
increasing  millions  for  the  evangelization  of  all  races, 
in  every  clime,  in  every  condition.  And  Slavdom, 
with  its  needs,  is  to  them  an  open  book.  In  normal 
times  they  are  in  unceasing  communication  with 
kindred  beyond  the  seas.  A  Slav  obtains  that  incom 
parable  treasure,  the  Bible,  and  writes  to  a  kinsman  or 
friend  about  it.  The  destination  of  that  letter  may  be 
Prague  in  Bohemia,  or  Brno  in  Moravia.  It  may  be 
Riga,  the  Baltic  seaport,  or  Petrograd,  or  Moscow. 
It  may  be  Warsaw  or  Lodz,  the  great  towns  of  Poland, 


or  Belgrade,  in  Balkan  regions,  or  Odessa,  the  port  on 
the  Black  Sea,  or  Tiflis,  in  the  Caucasus,  or  Vladivos- 
tock,  on  the  Pacific  Ocean.  It  may  be  any  one  of  the 
vast  number  of  Slav  communities  from  the  Adriatic 
to  the  Pacific. 

Now  show  these  Slavs  the  nine  volumes  of  the 
Edinburgh  Conference  in  1910  and  the  three  volumes 
of  the  Panama  Conference  in  1916.  The  wonder 
grows  that  Slavdom  is  omitted,  when  every  logical, 
doctrinal,  strategic  reason  calls  for  its  inclusion.  The 
Panama  Conference  was  an  American  victory  for 
missions.  In  1900,  at  the  Ecumenical  Conference  in 
New  York,  Latin  America  was  included  in  the  dis 
cussions;  but  it  was  excluded  from  the  Edinburgh 
Conference,  through  the  opposition  of  some  German 
societies  and  of  elements  in  the  Anglican  Church. 
They  regarded  it  as  nominally  Christian.  At  Edin 
burgh  missionaries  from  Latin  America  drew  up  a 
defense  of  their  cause.  They  did  not  inquire  whether 
dominant  churches  in  these  lands  are  not  Christian 
churches,  but  affirmed  that  millions  are  there  without 
the  Word  of  God  and  the  gospel.  The  work  of  societies 
in  the  United  States  and  Canada  has  included  missions 
in  Latin  and  Oriental  churches,  while  British  and 
Continental  societies  have  a  narrower  basis.  The 
action  of  these  American  missionaries  led  to  the 
Panama  Conference;  and  their  arguments  lay  the  same 
foundation  for  the  evangelization  of  Slavdom.  If  the 
Holy  Spirit  is  poured  out,  why  may  not  this  Slav  line 
of  progress  become  the  most  rapid  and  effective  of  all, 
and  a  reenforcement  for  Christian  missions  in  pagan 
and  Mohammedan  lands? 

Anatole  Leroy-Beaulieu  wrote  three  volumes  on 
"The  Empire  of  the  Tsars  and  the  Russians,"  devoting 
the  third  volume  wholly  to  the  subject  of  religion.  His 
purpose,  like  that  of  most  writers  on  Slavdom,  is  not 


evangelical,  yet  evangelical  -readers  may  obtain  sug 
gestions  from  this  work.  He  writes  at  length  on  relig 
ious  feeling  in  Russia,  on  the  Greek  Orthodox  Church, 
its  usages,  its  clergy,  married  and  unmarried;  of  the 
Schism  or  Raskol,  the  various  sects  not  in  the  national 
Church,  those  that  have  priests,  those  that  do  not. 

Turn  to  the  pages  where  he  describes  parochial 
visitations,  where  the  "priest  and  deacon,  in  their 
vestments,  go  from  house  to  house  to  sing  an  *  Alleluia.' 
The  moment  they  enter,  they  turn  to  the  eikons  in  the 
corner,  rapidly  recite  the  prayers  for  the  occasion,  give 
the  inmate  the  crucifix  to  kiss,  pocket  their  money,  and 
go  to  the  next  house.  .  .  .  The  clergy,  on  such  occa 
sions,  frequently  become  the  victims  of  a  fine  national 
quality — hospitality.  ...  So  the  parish  clergy  travel, 
.  .  .  in  full  canonicals,  dispensing  blessings,  and 
everywhere  receiving  in  exchange  a  'drink'  and  a  few 
kopeks.  The  consequences  are  easily  divined.  By 
nightfall  there  is  little  left  of  the  priest.  .  .  .  Such 
scenes  are  naturally  not  calculated  to  bring  the  dissen 
ters  back  to  the  bosom  of  the  Church.  I  once  saw,  in 
Moscow,  in  a  picture  gallery  belonging  to  a  wealthy 
raskolnik,  a  canvas  by  Perof  representing  just  such  a 
scene.  The  priest,  crucifix  in  hand,  totters  along,  while 
the  drunken  deacon  soils  the  sacred  vestments." 

In  contrast  we  have  the  volume  of  "Pastor's 
Sketches"  by  the  late  Dr.  Spencer,  a  Presbyterian 
pastor  of  Brooklyn,  New  York.  He  gives  a  touching 
account  of  his  visits  to  a  skeptical  young  Irishman,  who 
died  a  believer  in  the  atonement  of  Christ,  and  his 
interviews  with  the  indifferent  or  irresolute,  to  whom 
he  gave  the  earnest  message,  "Behold,  now  is  the  day 
of  salvation!" 

Dr.  Dalton,  of  Petrograd,  told  a  story  of  Lord 
Radstock's  evangelistic  labors  in  that  city,  and  of 
his  convert,  Colonel  Pashkof,  which  appeared  in  the 


Catholic  Presbyterian  of  August,  1881.  It  illustrates 
the  possibilities  for  gospel  work  in  Slavdom  when 
liberty  is  assured.  Lord  Radstock  was  an  adherent  of 
Plymouth  Brethrenism,  somewhat  modified;  but  the 
story  is  not  of  theological  tenets,  telling  rather  how  this 
fisher  of  men  used  his  net  in  the  service  of  his  Master. 
He  could  address  his  hearers  in  French  and  English, 
with  which  many  of  the  Russian  nobility  were  familiar, 
and  being  a  nobleman  himself  he  could  approach  them 
on  an  equal  footing. 

"His  first  appearance  was  somewhat  strange.  He 
knelt  in  silent  prayer,  then  invited  the  audience  to 
join  him,  as  in  the  very  simplest  speech  he  lifted  up  his 
heart  unto  God.  He  spoke  in  an  ordinary  conversa 
tional  tone,  regarding  those  things  of  which  his  heart 
was  full.  The  loose  threads  of  the  somewhat  vaguely 
expressed  argument  were  all  connected  with  the  ever- 
recurring  topic,  the  blessedness  of  those  saved  by 
Christ — saved  now,  for  the  Saviour  is  ever  present 
and  offers  salvation  to  the  sinner;  and  when  this  salva 
tion  has  been  truly  received,  he  cannot  be  lost,  for  the 
Good  Shepherd  watches  over  his  sheep.  .  .  . 

"The  worship  of  saints,  and  their  supposed  inter 
cession,  as  maintained  in  the  Russian  as  well  as  the 
Roman  Catholic  Church,  have  an  evil  effect  upon  the 
relation  of  the  soul  to  the  Saviour.  Worshipers  prefer 
to  address  saints  rather  than  the  Saviour,  shrinking  in 
their  sinfulness  before  the  majesty  of  the  divine  Son; 
and  to  this  feeling  of  aversion  his  future  advent  as  the 
Judge  of  the  world,  adds,  as  it  were  a  fresh  force." 
Lord  Radstock  said  nothing  against  the  "Orthodox" 
doctrine  on  this  point;  he  carefully  abstained  from  any 
attack  upon  the  Church  of  the  country,  and  indeed 
sought  to  maintain  cordial  relations  with  all.  At  the 
same  time  he  was  able,  by  the  grace  of  God,  to  bring 
the  personality  of  the  Saviour,  through  the  warm  and 


loving  way  in  which  he  expressed  himself,  almost 
into  personal  communication  with  the  seeking  and 
longing  souls  whom  he  addressed.  So  it  came  to  pass 
with  them,  as  with  the  disciples  on  a  certain  occasion, 
"they  saw  no  one,  save  Jesus  only";  the  cloudy  veil  of 
saints  disappeared  like  the  veil  of  clouds  on  a  morning 
in  spring;  they  saw  before  them  in  their  devotions 
Jesus  only,  the  Light  of  the  world,  and  felt  how 
graciously  he  laid  his  hands  upon  them,  blessed,  healed, 
and  comforted  them,  and  forgave  their  sins.  As  we 
are  from  youth  accustomed  to  such  views  in  evangelical 
Churches,  we  do  not  readily  comprehend  what  a  power 
ful  effect  is  produced  when  these  truths  are  first  brought 
home  to  the  members  of  the  Greek  or  the  Romish 
Church.  This  side  of  the  truth,  moreover,  is  not  pre 
sented  and  emphasized  as  it  ought  to  be  in  the  teaching 
of  the  evangelical  Church. 

"For  weeks,  in  the  highest  society,  in  the  circles  of 
the  nobility  in  Petrograd  and  Moscow,  and  even  in  the 
distant  provinces,  the  most  frequently  recurring  name 
was  that  of  Lord  Radstock.  Some  were  enthusiastically 
in  his  favor;  some  derided  the  wonderful  saint.  Some 
'who  came  to  scoff  remained  to  pray.'  ' 

Dr.  Dalton  then  mentions  one  of  these,  Colonel 
Basil  Alexandrovitch  Pashkof,  who  was  one  of  the 
richest  men  in  Russia,  who  had  in  youth  served  in  the 
Guards,  and  had  an  early  introduction  to  the  highest 
circles  of  the  aristocracy.  When  converted  by  the 
truth,  "he  took  up  the  yoke  of  his  Lord  and  Master, 
Jesus  Christ.  The  nobility  of  the  man's  character  was 
seen  in  the  thoroughness  with  which,  from  the  begin- 
ming,  he  was  ready  to  confess  Christ.  He  soon  became 
the  central  point  of  the  movement.  .  .  .  About  this 
time,  Dr.  Craig,  of  the  Religious  Tract  Society,  had 
found  his  way  to  Petrograd,  desirous  of  doing  some 
work  of  usefulness  in  the  Russian  capital,  on  the  lines 


of  the  society.  The  importance  of  such  work  was  at 
once  discerned  by  Lord  Radstock.  The  emperor  had 
already  permitted  the  Bible  to  be  circulated  in  the 
vernacular  language  of  the  country,  and  it  was  impor 
tant  that  the  circulation  should  be  urged  forward 
throughout  the  whole  extent  of  the  vast  empire.  If, 
hand  in  hand  with  this  dissemination  of  the  Scriptures, 
there  could  be  circulated  tracts  and  publications  of  a 
character  fitted  to  counteract  the  influence  of  per 
nicious  and  revolutionary  publications,  which  had 
already  begun  to  spread,  it  was  clear  that  a  most 
important  point  would  be  gained." 

Dr.  Dalton  then  tells  how  the  first  meeting  of  a 
new  association  for  this  purpose  met  in  his  house,  also 
the  difficulties  that  were  experienced  in  preparing  suit 
able  literature,  since  mere  translations  from  other 
languages  were  often  ill  adapted  to  Russian  needs. 
He  also  describes  the  Christian  activities  of  the 
Pashkof  circles  in  hospitals  and  prisons,  giving  details 
of  the  conversion  of  a  student  nihilist,  who  himself 
wrote  a  tract  entitled  "He  Loves  Me." 

Further,  he  describes  Colonel  PashkoFs  activities 
as  a  lay  preacher.  In  droshky  stalls  and  factories, 
year  by  year  he  carried  on  his  work,  telling  his  fellow 
sinners  in  plain  language  of  the  Saviour  he  himself  had 
found.  He  strove  to  awaken  first  the  consciousness  of 
sin  and  then  to  lead  them  to  the  Saviour  who  bestows 
pardon  and  peace.  "On  Sunday  evenings  the  people 
assembled  in  PashkoFs  own  house;  and  the  splendid 
apartments  which  were  formerly  open  only  to  the  elite 
of  Russian  society  for  balls  now  stood  open  and  were 
filled  to  overflowing  by  crowds,  mostly  belonging  to 
the  very  lowest  orders  of  society,  who  desired  to  hear 
the  good  news  of  salvation,  and  were  moved  to  tears 
and  supplications  for  relief  from  the  burden  of  sin." 
Sometimes  the  crowd  numbered  as  many  as  thirteen  or 


fourteen  hundred.  Dr.  Dalton  met  a  peasant  far  in 
the  interior  of  Finland,  who  said,  "Pashkof  has  done 
us  much  good."  He  was  informed  that  many  Finnish 
laborers  who  worked  in  Petrograd  had  learned  the  Russ, 
and  attended  the  meetings,  carrying  the  same  doc 
trines  that  they  had  learned  to  their  distant  homes. 
Dr.  Dalton  also  states  how  Colonel  Pashkof  courteously 
wrote  a  letter  in  answer  to  a  request  by  a  Russian 
Church  dignitary,  and  depicted  his  own  spiritual 
development,  in  the  heartfelt  language  of  one  who  has 
passed  from  death  unto  life,  "who  speaks  in  the  joyful 
tone  of  one  who  cannot  wait  to  know  whether  his 
utterances  square  with  ecclesiastical  standards  or  not." 
The  reply  by  this  dignitary,  also  published,  has  "the 
reserved  language  of  one  who  is  accustomed  to  regulate 
all  his  utterances  by  such  standards,  and  who  is  unable 
to  conceive  that  there  is  any  truth  which  cannot  be 
regulated  by  them."  Dr.  Dalton  in  conclusion  says 
that  the  Pashkof  meetings  had  been  prohibited,  and 
that  Pashkof  had  been  requested  to  travel  abroad  for  a 
time.  He  returned  unmolested,  but  his  princely  halls 
were  no  longer  crowded  by  willing  hearers  of  the  gospel. 
His  followers  were  still  active  in  various  charities. 
Dr.  Dalton's  last  sentence  is:  "The  present  arrest, 
however,  that  has  been  laid  on  the  work  is  not  to  be 
regarded  with  dismay;  there  remains  abundant  encour 
agement  for  the  prayer  of  faith  and  the  patience 
of  hope." 

In  a  very  different  tone  M.  Leroy-Beaulieu  relates 
some  later  vicissitudes  of  this  movement:  "It  would 
be  unjust  to  look  on  Pashkovism  or  Radstockism  merely 
as  one  of  fashion's  vagaries.  .  .  .  Neither  Radstock 
nor  Pashkof  claimed  that  they  had  invented  a  new 
doctrine.  They  avoided  all  semblance  of  dogmatical 
controversy,  merely  commenting  on  the  gospel.  The 
success  of  this  drawing-room  revival  was  due  princi- 


pally  to  the  fact  that  it  answered  a  spiritual  need  too 
long  neglected  by  the  Orthodox  clergy.  Since  the 
priests  would  not  preach,  laymen  preached  in  their 

"The  Pashkovites  are  not  outside  the  pale  of  the 
Church.  They  are  a  living  proof  of  the  great  latitude 
which  can  be  enjoyed  within  her  ancient  precincts, 
from  the  lack  of  authority  on  doctrine.  For  the 
teaching  of  these  Orthodox  Evangelicals  is  tinged  with 
Protestantism,  with  Calvinism;  it  is  based  on  justi 
fication  by  faith,  wherein  it  differs  from  that  of 
Sutayef  and  others,  who  declare  religion  to  consist 
entirely  of  works.  The  Radstockists  believe  them 
selves  to  be  assured  of  salvation  when  they  feel  inti 
mately  united  with  the  Saviour.  'Have  you  Christ?' 
Lord  Radstock  used  to  ask  each  of  his  hearers;  'seek 
and  ye  shall  find.'  While  the  English  lord  could 
address  only  society  people,  Mr.  Pashkof  extended  his 
apostolic  work  to  the  lower  classes.  He  gathered 
together  in  his  own  house  all  sorts  and  conditions  of 
men.  .  .  .  This  was  a  great  novelty  for  Russia, 
where  the  cultured  and  illiterate  were  not  heretofore 
in  the  habit  of  being  served  with  the  same  intellectual 
nourishment.  Similar  gatherings  took  place  in  Moscow 
and  other  cities,  under  the  patronage  of  society  women, 
who  took  particular  pleasure,  in  their  own  salons,  in 
seating  the  footmen  behind  the  masters."  He  mentions 
Mr.  Pashkofs  activity  in  publications,  which  were 
scattered  broadcast  in  thousands  of  copies  as  far  as 
the  Caucasus,  and  in  Siberia.  The  narrative  continues: 

"So  long  as  Radstockism  was  confined  to  the 
privileged  classes,  the  government  did  not  pay  much 
attention  to  it.  If  there  is  freedom  anywhere  in 
Russia,  it  is  in  the  drawing  room.  It  was  different 
when  the  propaganda  passed  from  the  dress  coat  to 
the  sheepskin.  The  people,  with  their  innate  logic, 


did  not  always  observe,  in  their  attitude  toward  the 
Church  and  clergy,  the  deference  dictated  by  good 
taste  which  persons  drilled  in  the  compromises  of 
society  life  continued  to  show  them.  It  happened,  so 
one  of  Mr.  Pashkof's  friends  told  me,  that  some 
peasants  heard  him  discourse  on  the  uselessness  of 
ceremonies  and  observances;  and  the  first  thing  they 
did  on  returning  to  their  izbas  was  to  throw  their 
eikons  out  of  the  window.  The  imperial  government 
then  thought  it  time  to  institute  proceedings  against 
the  preaching  aristocrats.  Mr.  Pashkof  was  sent  out 
of  Petrograd  and  advised  to  stay  on  his  estates,  then 
invited  to  travel  abroad.  Count  Korf  also  had  to 
leave  the  capital.  The  society  founded  by  these 
gentlemen  was  dissolved  in  1884;  their  press  organ,  the 
Evangelical  Sunday  Paper,  was  suppressed." 

It  is  contrary  to  the  Constitution  of  the  United 
States,  and,  thank  God,  to  that  of  Czechoslovakia,  to 
forbid  evangelical  assemblies,  preaching,  teaching, 
publications,  and  the  formation  of  evangelical  churches, 
open  to  all  qualified  applicants.  As  it  is  the  purpose 
of  this  book  to  emphasize  the  significance  of  liberty 
in  the  land  of  Huss,  reference  to  Bulgaria,  and  to 
Jugoslavia,  is  here  omitted,  except  to  mention  that  the 
American  Board  of  Commissioners  for  Foreign  Mis 
sions,  also  the  Methodists,  have  had  missions  in 
Bulgaria,  duly  reported  in  their  publications.  The 
Great  War  has  spread  abroad  American  ideas,  among 
others,  religious  liberty,  making  it  easier  than  before 
to  win  friends  for  that  cause.  The  world  never  will 
find  the  way  to  safety  and  progress,  until  liberty  for 
the  gospel  is  won. 

No  discussion  of  religion  in  Slavdom  is  adequate 
without  mention  of  its  Reformation.  Such  mention, 
among  evangelical  Bohemians,  seems  to  be  their  irre 
pressible  habit.  When  they  are  to  describe  something 


contemporaneous  they  seem  instinctively  to  begin 
with  Huss  or  later  Reformers.  The  suppression  of 
their  Reformation  was  a  trick  of  foreign  oppressors. 
The  same  oppressors  tried  to  suppress  their  language, 
their  literature,  their  national  spirit.  Time  was  when 
ninety-five  per  cent  of  their  Bohemian  population 
was  accounted  evangelical.  Persecutions,  massacre, 
exile,  changed  this,  so  that  more  than  ninety-five  per 
cent  for  a  long  period  has  been  nonevangelical.  Poland, 
too,  had  its  Reformation,  and  Reformed  churches,  as 
by  a  miracle,  survive  in  both  these  Slav  lands.  Yet 
there  are  books  or  chapters  in  books  about  the  Reforma 
tion  which  entirely  omit  the  Slav  Reformation,  or 
barely  allude  to  it.  It  is  like  a  discussion  of  the  War, 
which  omits  mention  of  any  but  the  western  front! 
At  one  time  it  seemed  probable  that  Slav  evangelicals 
would  win  great  masses  of  Slavdom  for  the  gospel. 
At  one  time  nearly  all  the  Polish  Parliament  were 
Protestants.  If  Calvin's  hopes  had  been  fulfilled,  the 
history  of  all  Slav  nations  since  his  day  would  have 
been  different.  His  correspondence  with  Polish  and 
Bohemian  evangelicals  shows  a  zeal  for  the  extension 
of  the  gospel  among  these  two  Slav  peoples  that  should 
be  imitated  by  his  followers  to-day.  A  brief  account  of 
the  Bohemian  Reformation  by  Dr.  W.  G.  Blaikie,  the 
"Story  of  the  Bohemian  Church,''  was  published  years 
ago  by  the  Presbyterian  Board  of  Publication.  Its 
last  paragraphs,  doubtless  the  best  that  could  then  be 
written  about  the  needs  of  Bohemia,  are  now  out  of 
date.  As  a  counterpart  the  writer  prepared  an  account 
of  the  Polish  Reformation,  "Protestantism  in  Poland," 
published  by  the  same  Board.  He  was  the  more  inter 
ested  in  the  subject  from  a  knowledge  of  the  noble 
labors  of  Dr.  R.  J.  Miller,  of  Pittsburgh,  Pennsylvania, 
in  promoting  the  evangelization  of  Poles,  and  his 
efforts  to  interest  United  Presbyterians  and  others  in 


that  work.  Dr.  Miller  has  succeeded  in  obtaining  aid 
from  the  Presbyterian  Board  of  Publication  toward  the 
support  of  a  Polish  evangelical  paper,  Slowa  Zywota. 

On  July  6,  1415,  John  Huss  was  burned  to  death  by 
decree  of  the  Council  of  Constance,  and  on  that  date, 
Bohemians  of  all  creeds  or  of  no  creed  unite  to  com 
memorate  his  martyrdom.  How  is  it  that  after  five 
centuries  they  still  seem  to  worship  that  hero,  and, 
that  as  a  proverbial  consequence,  there  is  "a  spark  of 
Protestantism  in  every  Bohemian"? 

Huss  was  distinguished  as  a  popular  preacher.  As 
a  Reformer,  he  was  advancing  on  the  same  doctrinal 
lines  as  his  English  predecessor,  Wyclif.  He  opposed 
the  sale  of  indulgences.  He  desired  the  circulation  of 
the  Scriptures,  and  that  communicants  should  partake 
of  the  cup  as  well  as  the  bread,  so  that  to  this  day, 
"the  Book  and  the  Cup"  are  symbols  of  the  Reformed 
Bohemian  Church.  Huss  so  evidently  loved  the  gospel 
that  a  true  Hussite  is  clearly  evangelical,  and  in  fact 
Hussites  were  afterwards  classed  as  Calvinists.  Huss 
also  cultivated  the  novelty  of  congregational  singing. 
But  as  a  patriot  his  name  is  endeared  to  multitudes  who 
care  nothing  for  religious  doctrines. 

In  1409  German  influence  in  the  University  of  Prague 
gave  way  to  native  Bohemians,  by  a  change  in  the 
voting.  Then  thousands  of  Germans  departed  and 
formed  the  University  of  Leipsic,  while  Huss  became 
rector  of  the  University.  Huss  reformed  the  spelling 
of  the  language,  and  the  diacritical  marks  of  Bohemian 
or  Slovak  are  due  to  him,  by  which  c,  thus  marked, 
has  the  sound  of  ch  in  church,  and  s,  similarly,  is 
sounded  as  in  shall.  His  hand  is  thus  seen  in  the 
grammar  of  every  modern  Bohemian  or  Slovak  sen 
tence  and  in  the  development  of  the  literature. 

Through  centuries  of  Hapsburg  tyranny,  the  German 
iron  entered  the  Bohemian  soul,  so  that  Huss  was 


always  the  ideal  of  their  national  aspirations.  Cru 
sades  were  preached,  hosts  were  assembled  from  nearly 
all  of  Europe  to  crush  this  small  nation  in  the  Hussite 
wars,  but  the  genius  of  the  Hussite  general,  Zizka,  who 
was  never  defeated,  drove  them  back.  His  battle 
hymn  is  still  sung,  in  Bohemian  and  English,  and  is 
published  in  a  fine  illustrated  edition  of  Bohemian 
folk  songs,  by  Dr.  Vincent  Pisek,  of  New  York  City. 
Other  Hussite  hymns  are  still  sung  in  Bohemian 

Wily  enemies  took  advantage  of  divisions  in  Bohe 
mian  ranks.  The  Utraquists,  also  known  as  Calix- 
tines,  from  the  chalice  or  cup  which  they  demanded 
for  the  laity,  became  the  aristocratic  party,  and  the 
stricter  Reform  party,  the  Taborites,  became  the 
democratic  party,  sometimes  disastrously  conflicting 
with  each  other.  The  destruction  of  the  Taborites 
ended  the  Hussite  wars.  More  than  a  hundred  years 
after  the  death  of  Huss,  when  Luther  took  part  in  the 
famous  disputation  at  Leipsic,  he  thrilled  the  audience 
by  daring  to  criticize  the  Council  of  Constance,  and  by 
announcing  himself  in  effect  a  Hussite.  On  November 
8,  1620,  the  liberties  of  Bohemia  were  lost  in  the  battle 
of  the  White  Mountain,  and  only  restored  in  part  by 
the  edict  of  Toleration  in  1781.  For  over  a  hundred 
and  fifty  years  the  Bible  could  have  been  read  only  at 
the  risk  of  life.  Real  religious  liberty  was  assured  by 
the  triumph  of  the  Allies  in  1918,  and  by  the  constitu 
tion  of  Czechoslovakia,  as  well  as  by  the  character  of 
President  T.  G.  Masaryk,  who  is  of  evangelical 

Count  Valerian  Krasinski  in  1838  dedicated  his  work 
on  the  Polish  Reformation,  "To  the  Protestants  of 
the  British  Empire  and  of  the  United  States,  by  a 
Polish  Protestant."  For  fifty  years  it  made  rapid 
advances,  and  a  glance  at  a  map  of  that  time,  showing 


swarms  of  evangelical  churches  in  Poland  would  astonish 
anyone  ignorant  of  that  history.  An  account  of  the 
evangelical  schools,  printing  presses,  and  Bibles  of 
that  period  would  deepen  the  impression.  In  the  next 
fifty  years  there  was  a  rapid  decline.  Finally  Poland 
itself,  "after  a  career  of  degeneracy  almost  unexampled 
in  the  history  of  the  world,"  disappeared  from  the 
map.  Again  we  quote  Dr.  Dalton,  when  in  1884  he 
addressed  the  Presbyterian  Council  at  Belfast: 

"It  is  my  deepest  conviction,  as  the  result  of  long 
years  of  study,  that  Poland  has  been  strangled  by  the 
Romish  Church.  Had  that  noble  people  remained 
true  to  the  leading  of  John  Laski,  then  to  the  present 
day  had  those  melancholy  words,  ' 'Finis  Poloniae,' 
remained  unspoken.  If  anyone  wishes  to  understand 
what  the  audacious  man  of  Rome,  with  his  bodyguard 
of  Jesuits,  can  make  out  of  a  noble  country,  let  him 
study  the  history  of  Poland  to  the  present  day,  the 
history  of  a  people  that,  as  few  others,  offered  in  its 
worldly  circumstances  so  many  favorable  points  to  a 
Presbyterian  development." 

Chapter  II 


THE  form  of  evangelical  effort  known  as  colportage 
has  for  a  long  time,  and  on  a  larger  scale  than  any 
other,  been  employed  throughout  the  most  of  Slavdom, 
and  among  multitudes  in  the  United  States.  A  col 
porteur  may  not  always  be,  as  the  French  word  sig 
nifies,  "one  who  carries"  something  "on  his  neck,"  yet 
as  a  servant  of  Bible  or  tract  societies  he  is  a  sort  of 
book  agent,  needing  all  the  courage,  tact,  energy,  and 
perseverance  that  may  be  associated  with  that  calling. 
Some  western  cattlemen  have  amusingly  confounded 
the  word  with  "cowpuncher."  When  such  wrork  began 
in  Japan,  the  natives  called  the  colporteur  "The-Holy- 
Book-to-sell-go-about-man."  Another  beautifully  ex 
pressive  term  is  "Bible  messenger." 

The  colporteur  is  an  itinerant,  generally  a  lay 
missionary.  His  main  function  is  to  distribute  books, 
not  specially  to  hold  prayer  meetings,  start  new 
Sunday  schools,  begin  or  organize  new  missions,  or  to 
preach,  though  on  occasion,  if  qualified,  he  may  do  all 
these  things.  But  if  books  are  not  circulated,  Bible 
societies  must  go  out  of  business. 

The  colporteur  promotes  the  reading  of  the  Word. 
A  good  statement  of  the  relative  importance  of  the 
work  is  in  the  Westminster  Shorter  Catechism:  "The 
Spirit  of  God  maketh  the  reading,  but  especially  the 
preaching,  of  the  Word,  an  effectual  means  of  convincing 
and  converting  sinners,  and  of  building  them  up  in 
holiness  and  comfort  through  faith  unto  salvation." 
Preachers  and  missionaries  often  find  colporteurs  indis 
pensable.  Volumes  might  not  suffice  to  tell  of  the  mis- 



sions  that  have  originated  from  the  reading  of  Bibles, 
by  individuals  or  groups,  in  widely  different  parts  of 
the  world.  It  would  be  unjust  to  demand  either  from 
colporteurs  or  preachers  that  they  produce  some 
"permanent,"  showy  results  in  some  given  time, 
according  to  a  critic's  caprice.  We  cannot  dismiss 
Christ's  rule  for  his  Kingdom,  "first  the  blade,  then 
the  ear,  then  the  full  grain  in  the  ear."  The  Egyptian 
boatman  casts  his  grain,  his  "bread"  into  the  fertile 
flood  of  the  Nile,  "upon  the  waters,"  but  he  does  not 
expect  to  find  it  till  after  "many  days."  Luther's 
conversion  is  usually  traced  to  his  reading  of  the  Bible, 
which  he  first  saw  in  Latin  about  the  year  1504,  when 
he  was  twenty  years  old;  while  his  Reformation  dates 
from  1517,  years  after. 

Bible  women  have  accomplished  things  in  Christian 
work  that  could  not  be  done  by  an  angel  from  heaven; 
but  it  is  best  that  our  colporteurs  should  be  men.  They 
may  be  required  to  carry  from  fifty  to  seventy  pounds 
of  books,  under  a  blazing  sky,  or  through  winter's 
mud  and  snows  and  rains.  They  may  walk  through 
lonely  forests,  or  through  dangerous  city  neighbor 
hoods  at  night.  They  are  "in  journey  ings  often,  in 
perils  of  waters,  in  perils  of  robbers,  in  perils  by"  their 
own  "countrymen,  in  perils  by  the"  heathen,  "in 
perils  in  the  city,  in  perils  in  the  wilderness,  in  perils 
in  the  sea,  in  perils  among  false  brethren."  Students 
on  vacations  may  take  up  this  work,  men  with  years 
of  education,  or  new  converts  so  illiterate  that  they 
can  barely  scrawl  their  reports.  Sometimes  the 
uneducated  men  make  the  best  salesmen.  It  would  be 
difficult  suddenly  to  abandon  the  support  of  an  ordained 
man,  a  lady  missionary,  a  mission  station.  But  a 
colporteur  may  be  supported  in  one  region  for  a  month, 
transferred  to  another  for  three  months  or  a  year,  on 
short  notice,  to  renew  work  whenever  new  occasions 


call  for  it.  "Uncle  John  Vassar,"  colporteur  of  the 
American  Tract  Society,  said  that  he  was  not  a  shep 
herd,  but  a  shepherd's  dog,  to  bring  the  sheep  to  the 
shepherd.  Colporteurs  are  scouts  of  the  Church.  We 
can  say  to  a  colporteur  what  Moses  said  to  his  friend : 
"Thou  mayest  be  to  us  instead  of  eyes." 

Colportage  is  the  most  flexible,  most  economical,  of 
all  Christian  work,  and  it  should  be  vigorously 
increased  at  home  and  abroad.  Colportage,  moreover, 
is  a  continuous  survey,  cheaper,  more  practical,  and 
more  evangelistic  than  any  other  kind  of  survey. 
Colporteurs  often  are  required  to  pause,  for  some 
purely  humanitarian  errand,  in  behalf  of  the  sick,  the 
unemployed,  the  unfortunate,  or  those  who  may  need 
an  interpreter. 

The  writer  was  superintendent  of  colportage  for  the 
Young  Men's  Bible  Society  of  Allegheny  County  at 
Pittsburgh,  Pennsylvania,  in  1900  and  part  of  1901. 
This  was  the  first  work  of  the  sort  this  venerable 
organization  had  undertaken  among  foreigners.  Two 
of  the  lessons  from  that  experience  prove  the  great 
usefulness  of  colportage: 

First,  as  never  before,  the  Slav  colporteurs  revealed 
in  that  important  center  of  evangelical  churches  the 
accessibility  of  the  Slavs.  One  day  a  colporteur  re 
ported  that  Schoenville,  near  the  city,  would  be  a 
good  place  for  a  mission.  The  writer  called  the  atten 
tion  of  Dr.  W.  L.  McEwan,  his  former  fellow  student, 
to  these  facts.  Dr.  McEwan  warmly  welcomed  the 
idea,  began  a  correspondence,  learned  the  name  and 
recommendations  of  Rev.  V.  Losa,  then  a  pastor  of  a 
Bohemian  Presbyterian  Church  at  Clarkson,  Nebraska, 
and  did  not  rest  until  the  latter  was  called  to  begin 
his  mission  at  Schoenville.  Developments  made 
necessary  a  joint  committee  of  Pittsburgh  and  Alle 
gheny  Presbyteries  and,  later,  the  union  of  these  two 

WILLIAM   L.   McEWAN,    D.D.,   LL.D. 


presbyteries,  mainly  for  the  more  effective  prosecution 
of  this  work  among  foreigners.  These  brethren  had 
sturdy  minds,  and  strong  local  attachments,  old  and 
loved  traditions,  so  that  it  cost  a  sacrifice  of  sentiment 
and  convenience  to  make  such  changes,  all  of  which 
began  with  these  colporteurs.  Dr.  McEwan  was  an 
unwearied  advocate  and  leader  in  the  cause,  year 
after  year,  and  the  results  make  up  an  important  part 
of  the  achievements  of  his  ministerial  career.  In  1902 
the  joint  committee  of  these  two  presbyteries  began 
colportage.  No  sales  among  Slavs  had  been  reported 
from  any  part  of  the  United  States  that  were  greater 
than  those  of  the  Bible  Society  at  Pittsburgh.  But 
the  first  year's  sales  among  Slavs  by  the  Presbyterian 
colporteurs  were  double  those  of  the  local  Bible  Society 
for  a  corresponding  period. 

If  colportage  is  a  power  for  good  in  the  region  of 
Pittsburgh,  why  not  for  other  regions  in  this  country? 
With  this  conviction  the  writer  corresponded  with  the 
late  Dr.  J.  A.  Worden,  with  the  result  that  the  Pres 
byterian  Board  of  Publication  in  the  summer  of  1902 
took  up  the  work,  the  writer  assisting  in  securing  and 
directing  their  first  colporteur  among  Slavs,  a  Bohemian, 
afterwards  ordained  as  a  minister,  Rev.  Frank  Uherka. 
This  work  was  done  in  Lehigh  Presbytery,  beginning 
at  Shenandoah,  Pennsylvania.  Some  years  ago  the 
estimate  was  made  that  the  Presbyterian  colportage  of 
the  country,  including  this  Board  and  Pittsburgh 
Presbytery,  exceeded  that  of  the  other  denominations 
combined.  Boasting  is  excluded;  for  no  denomination 
has  done  all  that  it  should  have  done  for  this  work. 

Another  result  was  achieved  by  Slav  colporteurs  of 
the  Bible  Society  in  Pittsburgh;  they  started  a  move 
ment  among  translators  across  the  sea.  Bible  trans 
lators  have  been  called  "the  pioneers  of  civilization; 
but  the  pioneers  of  pioneers  are  the  colporteurs,"  and 


here  is  an  instance.  The  colporteurs  reported  that 
Lithuanians  would  not  accept  the  Bibles  that  were 
offered  to  them,  as  they  were  in  an  alphabet  that  they 
did  not  use.  Inquiry  showed  that  for  many  years  in 
Russia  there  had  been  no  permission  to  publish  any 
books  in  the  Lithuanian  language.  Consequently  the 
Lithuanians  were  more  destitute  of  Scriptures  than  the 
Dakota  Indians,  who  have  the  Bible  in  their  own 
tongue.  The  writer  had  a  correspondence  with  the 
British  and  Foreign  Bible  Society  on  this  subject, 
especially  after  he  became  pastor  in  1902  at  Shenan- 
doah,  Pennsylvania,  which  was  a  Lithuanian  strong 
hold.  Questions  arose  as  to  the  proper  style  for  modern 
Lithuanian.  Copies  of  Lithuanian  newspapers,  pub 
lished  in  America,  in  the  Roman  type  used  by  the  mass 
of  Lithuanians  to-day,  were  obtained  and  sent  to 
London  to  the  "B.  F.  B.  S."  And  here  the  writer  may 
be  allowed  to  pay  an  American's  tribute  to  the  officials 
of  that  noble  Bible  Society,  for  the  courtesy  of  their 
correspondence,  and  the  patience  and  perseverance 
with  which  they  met  the  problems  of  a  new  Bible 
version.  The  chief  correspondent  on  such  questions 
was  the  late  Rev.  John  Sharp,  of  the  Church  of  Eng 
land,  the  editorial  superintendent.  His  successor  is 
Dr.  R.  Kilgour,  a  Presbyterian,  formerly  a  missionary 
in  India.  At  last  Russia  removed  the  ban  from  the 
publication  of  Lithuanian  Bibles.  Colporteurs  of  the 
Presbyterian  Board  of  Publication  have  sold  them  in 
America,  and  thousands  of  copies  have  been  sold  in 

At  this  point  some  explanations  may  naturally  be 
made  as  to  Lithuania.  Disregarding  what  some  lexi 
cographers  or  philologists  may  say  as  to  the  relation 
between  the  Lithuanian  and  the  Slavic  group  of  lan 
guages,  the  experience  of  colporteurs  is  that  while  Slavs 
can  communicate  more  or  less  readily  with  other  Slavs, 


they  can  scarcely  understand  one  word  of  Lithuanian. 
Lithuania  was  once  part  of  Poland,  and  many  Lithu 
anians  speak  Polish,  and  thus  communicate  with  Slav 
colporteurs.  It  pleases  them  that  they  may  claim  a 
high  antiquity  for  their  language,  since  scholars  mark 
the  resemblance  between  the  Lithuanian  and  the 
venerable  Sanskrit  of  India.  But  a  professor  in  Oxford, 
England,  objects  to  the  claim  that  Lithuanian  is  "the 
oldest  language  in  Europe,"  preferring  to  class  it  as  a 
"well-preserved  language"  whose  literary  monuments 
are  hardly  more  ancient  than  the  Reformation  era. 
In  a  survey  of  Slavdom,  waiving  questions  of  linguistic 
relationship,  the  practical  fact  is  before  us  that  Lithu 
ania  always  did  and  must  have  dealings  with  the  Slav 
group,  especially  Poles  and  Russians;  that  the  Great 
War  leaves  it  recognized  as  a  separate  nationality; 
that  it,  too,  proclaims  religious  freedom;  and  that  it 
has  interesting  Lithuanian  Reformed  Churches,  having 
knowledge  and  fellowship  with  Polish  Reformed 
churches  and  adherents  who  are  leaders  in  Lithuanian 
national  affairs.  In  one  of  the  Lithuanian  publications 
we  may  see  a  facsimile  letter  addressed  by  John  Calvin 
to  their  synod.  The  Reformers  are  their  spiritual 
ancestry.  American  Presbyterians  should  establish 
regular  communications  with  brethren  of  our  own 
branch  of  the  Church  of  Christ,  kindred  who  too  long 
have  been  obscure  to  us,  who  need  a  helping  hand,  and 
who  may  have  inspiring  successes  to  comfort  them  for 
centuries  of  hindrances. 

Americans  would  learn  many  lessons,  if  they  could  see 
the  colporteur  at  his  work.  One  of  these  men  found  a 
group  of  men  at  cards,  perhaps  drinking,  and  was  sa 
luted  with  "Oh  !  Go  away !  We  do  not  want  your  books !" 

"Ah!"  he  answered,  "that  is  not  fair!  You  should 
give  me  a  hearing !  This  book  says,  'Husbands,  love  your 
wives,  as  Christ  loved  the  Church.'  Is  that  a  bad  book?" 


"Oh,  well,  maybe  it  is  not  such  a  bad  book!" 

"And  this  book  says" — and  as  soon  as  possible,  the 
colporteur  read  the  Book,  and  let  it  speak  for  itself. 
If  any  asked  about  the  Virgin  Mary,  he  turned  to  a 
passage  where  she  is  mentioned.  If  any  inquired 
whether  the  Book  contains  any  prayers,  he  read,"Create 
in  me  a  clean  heart,  O  God."  Sometimes  colporteurs 
are  asked  if  the  Book  tells  anything  about  the  sufferings 
of  Christ,  and  one  colporteur  said  that  he  sold  many 
a  New  Testament  after  reading  Matt.,  ch.  27,  the 
account  of  the  crucifixion.  Tears  have  streamed  down 
the  faces  of  those  who  hear  in  their  language  this  story 
from  the  gospel. 

Some  of  the  anecdotes  published  by  Dr.  George  W. 
Montgomery  in  a  booklet  for  Pittsburgh  Presbytery  are 
worth  repeating: 

"Shortly  after  the  work  among  the  Slavonic  people 
was  begun  in  Schoenville,  in  the  year  1900,  a  Bohemian 
man  from  Slavonia,  Joseph  Kujinek,  was  induced  to 
attend  the  meetings.  The  place  where  our  meetings 
were  held  was  a  small,  unattractive  rented  room. 
Joseph  had  been  a  bad  character  in  the  Old  Country, 
was  often  drunk,  and  his  wife  suffered  greatly  at 
his  hands.  As  soon  as  he  entered  our  mission  he  became 
very  much  interested  in  what  he  heard  and  hardly 
three  weeks  elapsed  before  he  was  soundly  converted. 
He  asked  to  be  received  into  membership  in  the 
mission.  We  were  very  careful  about  receiving 
members  into  the  mission,  preferring  to  exercise  a 
watch  over  them,  ofttimes  for  weeks,  that  we  might 
make  no  mistake.  But  we  were  obliged  to  make  an 
exception  in  the  case  of  this  man.  His  testimony  was 
so  earnest  and  so  touching  that  we  admitted  him  at 
once  to  full  communion.  He  stayed  with  the  mission 
six  months  and  was  a  most  exemplary  member. 

"After  six  months  he  returned  to  his  European  home 



where  he  remained.  Letters  reached  us  of  how  tender 
his  meeting  with  his  wife  was.  She  went  to  the  station 
to  meet  a  drunkard,  as  she  supposed,  from  whom  she 
expected  to  suffer  more  than  before,  because  she  had 
heard  that  he  had  joined  the  "Devil's  Church"  in 
America.  To  her  great  surprise,  however,  he  not  only 
did  not  go  to  the  saloon,  but  when  he  reached  their 
home  he  opened  a  big  book  (Bible),  read  a  chapter 
from  it,  and  knelt  down  and  thanked  God  for  a  safe 
return  to  his  home.  He  read  from  his  Bible  every  day 
and  was  a  very  tender  husband,  a  thing  to  which  his 
wife  was  not  used.  His  wife  was  so  moved  after  three 
or  four  days  that  she  begged  him  with  tears  in  her  eyes 
to  take  her  over  to  the  same  church  to  which  he 
belonged.  The  following  Sunday  they  both  made  a 
journey  of  three  hours  to  the  nearest  Protestant 
Church  where  they  became  members. 

"Since  that  time  they  have  lived  a  happy  life  in  their 
home  though  bitterly  persecuted  for  their  faith.  When 
Joseph  learned  that  there  were  Protestants  scattered 
about  in  the  neighborhood,  he  began  to  visit  them  and 
within  half  a  year  he  had  found  about  sixty  Protestant 
families.  He  was  eager  for  meetings,  but  there  was  no 
building  anywhere  in  the  neighborhood  which  could  be 
rented  for  Protestant  use.  He  therefore  bought  a  little 
house,  made  one  room  out  of  two,  and  began  to  gather 
the  Protestants  every  Sunday.  Within  two  years  this 
work  of  one  convert  grew  into  a  church. 

"Mr.  Medvid,  a  Ruthenian  convert,  who  a  few  years 
ago  did  not  know  of  the  existence  of  the  Holy  Book, 
was  converted  in  Schoenville.  Right  after  his  conver 
sion  he  lost  his  job  because  he  would  not  bribe  his 
bosses  any  more,  he  would  not  go  to  saloons,  and  he 
would  not  swear.  When  he  applied  for  work  the  boss 
sent  him  to  the  church  to  pray.  It  was  impossible  for 
him  to  get  work  hi  Schoenville.  He  therefore  moved  to 


Coraopolis  where  he  got  work  in  an  oil  refinery.  Almost 
all  the  workmen  there  happened  to  be  Protestants  and 
very  good  men.  Before  he  got  this  job,  however,  he 
walked  across  the  country  from  Coraopolis  to  Moon 
Run.  When  he  was  returning  it  was  dark.  Three  men 
held  him  up  and  demanded  money.  One  of  them  was  a 
Negro  who  pointed  a  revolver  in  his  face,  threatening 
to  kill  him.  This  is  the  characteristic  reply  Mr.  Medvid 
made  to  his  threat:  'Money  I  have  none,  but  as  to 
your  killing  me  I  want  to  say  that  I  am  not  afraid. 
My  soul  cannot  be  killed.  It  belongs  to  God.'  Such 
an  unusual  answer  moved  the  Negro  and  he  said:  'I 
had  a  good  Christian  mother  who  taught  me  to  believe 
in  God  and  obey  him,  but  I  went  the  wrong  way.  I 
will  not  harm  you.  Here  is  your  watch;  go  your  way; 
you  are  safe'." 

An  illustration  of  the  power  of  the  printed  page  in 
shaping  lives  will  be  found  in  the  following: 

"In  some  unknown  way  a  copy  of  the  Krestanske 
Listy,  a  paper  that  is  published  in  Pittsburgh  in  the 
Bohemian  language  and  edited  by  Dr.  Losa,  super 
intendent  of  the  presbytery's  foreign  work,  fell  into 
the  hands  of  a  Bohemian  woman  at  Raccoon,  Pennsyl 
vania.  She,  together  with  her  husband  and  quite  a 
colony  of  Bohemians,  had  been  living  a  life  of  sin  and 
great  indifference  to  religious  matters  for  a  number  of 
years.  When  this  paper  came  into  her  hands  she  was 
so  deeply  impressed  with  what  she  read  that  she  came 
twenty -eight  miles  to  the  city  of  Pittsburgh  to  seek 
Dr.  Losa  and  beg  him  to  teach  her  more  about  the  way 
to  Godo  Her  child  of  seven  or  eight  years  accompanied 
her  on  this  journey.  More  than  two  hours  of  time  was 
spent  in  the  office  where  she  was  directed  to  look  to 
'the  Lamb  of  God,  that  taketh  away  the  sin  of  the 
world.'  She  went  away  from  the  office  with  her  face 
aglow  with  the  new  joy  that  had  come  to  her  by  faith 


in  Jesus  Christ.  She  returned  to  her  home  and  in  a 
short  time  that  entire  community  became  quiet, 
peace-loving,  and  orderly." 

A  brief  account  taken  from  a  publication  kindly 
furnished  by  the  superintendent,  J.  M.  Somerndike,  of 
the  work  undertaken  among  Slavs  by  our  Presbyterian 
Board  of  Publication  may  here  be  sufficient: 

"The  efforts  of  the  Board  in  behalf  of  foreign  immi 
grants  may  rightly  be  termed  "evangelizing"  because 
they  are  concerned  solely  with  the  giving  of  the  evangel 
or  glad  tidings  to  the  host  of  foreigners  in  America. 
The  Board's  work  is  to  sow  the  seed  of  the  Kingdom, 
preparing  the  field  for  cultivation  and  harvest.  Its 
efforts  are  confined  to  the  preparation  of  evangelical 
literature  in  the  languages  of  immigrant  peoples  and 
the  distribution  of  such  literature,  together  with  the 
Scriptures,  through  the  work  of  colporteurs.  These 
colporteurs,  who  are  missionaries  in  the  truest  sense, 
canvass  foreign  colonies  and  settlements,  especially 
in  the  large  cities,  doing  personal  work  besides  gathering 
information  which  frequently  prepares  the  way  for  the 
establishment  of  permanent  mission  stations. 

"Apart  from  the  preached  Word,  the  most  effective 
means  of  spreading  the  gospel,  especially  among  the 
immigrants,  is  through  the  printed  page.  Who  can 
measure  the  far-reaching  effect  of  the  silent  yet  forceful 
messenger  of  God's  truth  in  the  form  of  a  brief  tract  or 
leaflet  placed  in  the  hands  of  one  who  may  be  seeking 
the  light? 

"While  the  Church  continues  to  make  liberal  use  of 
literature  in  introducing  the  gospel  into  heathen  lands, 
it  has  been  neglected  in  America,  where  it  is  even  more 
urgently  needed.  The  influx  of  millions  of  immigrants 
from  southern  Europe,  speaking  strange  tongues,  found 
us  unprepared.  With  a  very  inadequate  supply  of 
evangelical  literature  in  foreign  languages,  and  with 


only  a  few  Protestant  ministers  who  could  speak  the 
languages  of  these  newcomers,  the  Church  found  itself 
well-nigh  helpless  to  convey  the  message  of  the  gospel 
to  any  large  numbers. 

"The  Missionary  Department  of  the  Presbyterian 
Board  of  Publication  and  Sabbath  School  Work,  with 
the  assistance  of  other  agencies,  began  to  develop  for 
this  new  immigration  a  series  of  tracts  and  booklets  in 
the  same  manner  as  it  met  the  immigrant  problem  of  a 
generation  ago,  when  the  majority  of  those  who  came 
to  our  shores  were  from  the  countries  of  northern 
Europe.  The  Board  also  saw  the  necessity  of  reviving 
the  work  of  the  colporteur,  who  in  former  days  had 
rendered  such  effective  service  in  reaching  the  Swedes, 
Norwegians,  French,  and  others  who  came  to  America 
in  the  earlier  immigration. 

"A  class  of  missionaries  concerning  whom  we  hear 
and  read  but  little,  consists  of  the  humble  colporteurs, 
or  Bible  men,  who  are  taking  the  gospel  to  the  people 
of  many  tongues  in  the  language  of  their  native  lands. 
The  colportage  system  of  evangelization  has  been  tried 
and  tested  for  centuries." 

An  account  of  the  Slav  periodicals  published  by 
the  Presbyterian  Board  is  given  in  the  supplement  to 
this  book. 

In  the  Russian  Empire  for  a  number  of  years,  col 
porteurs  of  the  B.  F.  B.  S.  had  special  privileges  from 
the  Russian  Department  of  Railways  in  the  granting  of 
free  passes  and  for  the  free  carriage  of  goods,  thus 
saving  thousands  of  pounds  for  the  Society.  Steam 
ship  companies  on  the  great  Siberian  rivers  were  like 
wise  generous.  In  one  report  from  Siberia,  mention  is 
made  of  an  agent's  journey  of  fifteen  hundred  miles, 
first  class  and  free  of  charge;  and  that  the  total  weight 
of  Scriptures  carried  to  and  from  the  headquarters  of 
that  agency  in  that  year  was  seventy-six  tons.  When 


the  railways  were  congested  during  the  War,  these 
privileges  were  withdrawn.  The  colporteurs  accord 
ingly  did  not  sell  so  much  on  trains,  but  devoted  them 
selves  to  the  towns,  especially  those  that  have  rail 
way  junctions. 

In  the  summer,  every  year,  one  of  the  colporteurs 
journeyed  from  Petrograd  to  the  White  Sea.  Among 
other  places,  he  would  go  to  the  island  of  the  famous 
Solovetsky  Monastery,  visited  by  thousands  of  pilgrims. 
He  always  received  a  welcome  there,  sometimes,  too, 
much  assistance  in  his  colportage  work,  as  the  monks 
take  supplies  for  the  pilgrims.  At  the  Verkolsky 
Monastery  he  once  met  the  famous  Father  John  of 
Kronstadt,  who  was  making  a  visit.  He  had  tea  and 
dinner  with  him. 

"You  have  for  a  long  time  been  serving  in  the  Society, 
my  friend,"  said  Father  John.  "It  is  a  good  service — 
one  might  call  it  apostolic." 

"Yes,"  said  he,  "I  am  now  in  my  thirteenth  year  of 

When  Father  John's  steamer  was  leaving,  the 
colporteur  asked  if  the  former  would  give  him  passage 
with  him  back  to  Archangel;  Father  John  at  once  con 
sented,  and  on  the  voyage  spoke  to  him  further  about 
his  work  as  a  colporteur,  rejoicing  at  his  great  success. 
When  questioned  about  his  health  the  colporteur 
replied  that  now,  thank  God,  he  was  well,  but  that 
eighteen  months  before  he  had  undergone  a  serious 

"It  is  evident,"  said  Father  John,  "that  the  Lord 
still  had  need  of  you,  as  he  has  brought  you  back  to 
health  and  strength." 

On  that  journey  of  six  thousand  miles,  the  colpor 
teur  circulated  nearly  three  thousand  copies  of  Scripture. 

The  same  colporteur  earlier  in  this  tour  arrived  at 
Archangel  and  found  difficulty  in  obtaining  a  place 


to  store  his  stock  of  Scriptures,  of  which  he  had  about 
a  thousand  rubles'  worth.  He  went  to  the  archpriest, 
and  begged  him  to  allow  him  to  keep  the  books  in  the 
cathedral  building;  his  request  was  granted,  thus  saving 
the  Society  all  expense  for  storage.  On  another  tour 
he  was  in  a  barracks  where  three  hundred  workers 
were  quartered.  His  stock  was  rapidly  exhausted,  and 
one  man  who  took  several  copies  was  besieged  by  the 
others:  "Ivan  Petrovitch!  For  Christ's  sake,  give  me 
one  little  book,  and  I  shall  always  pray  for  you!" 

A  bookseller  in  Archangel  remarked  to  him  that  in 
the  north  he  supposed  sales  of  Scripture  would  be 
small.  "On  the  contrary,"  said  the  colporteur,  "about 
a  hundred  rubles  [then  ten  pounds  sterling]  a  week." 
The  bookseller  wondered,  for  he  himself  did  not  sell  as 
many  of  such  books  in  a  year,  and  asked  how  the 
colporteur  managed  it. 

"I  go  everywhere,"  was  the  reply,  "and  wherever 
there  are  doors  open,  there  I  offer  the  Scriptures. 
Here,  for  instance,  in  your  own  street,  I  have  sold 
twenty-one  copies  in  a  drapery  establishment  and 
twelve  in  a  grocer's  shop.  I  go  to  the  people,  I 
bring  the  books  under  their  noses,  I  tell  them  the 
price.  I  show  them  that  it  is  the  gospel,  and  urge 
them  to  buy— that  is  all."  The  report  adds:  "That 
is  all;  but  there  lies  in  that  just  the  very  secret 
of  being  a  colporteur." 

A  suggestive  paragraph  in  a  B.  F.  B.  S.  report  tells 
how  the  men  are  selected  and  trained.  A  colporteur 
is  always  admitted  on  probation  for  a  period  of  from 
six  to  nine  months.  He  has  to  show  what  is  in  him  in 
the  way  of  endurance,  physical  and  moral;  the  col 
porteur's  life  will  try  a  man  quite  sufficiently  in  this 
respect.  He  must  show  whether  he  has  the  gift  of 
making  himself  and  his  vocation  acceptable  to  people 
of  different  classes;  he  must  show  that  he  can  exercise 


practical  wisdom  in  his  going  to  and  fro  among  the 
people;  he  must  show  that  he  has  some  idea  of  the 
higher  nature  of  his  calling  as  a  bearer  of  the  Word 
of  God: 

"Probationers  often  fail  to  attain  our  standard  for 
admission  to  the  full  rank  of  colporteur.  We  hesitate 
sometimes  in  the  case  of  a  man  who  proves  himself  to 
have  the  salesman's  gift  but  to  be  apparently  devoid  of 
any  other  qualification  associated  with  the  name  colpor 
teur.  Yet  we  have  seen  such  a  man — at  first  a  mere 
salesman,  though  a  good  one — begin  in  the  course  of 
time  to  be  interested  in  Bible  circulation  as  such,  and 
at  last  become  proud  of  his  calling  as  a  colporteur  and 
devoted  to  it.  On  the  other  hand,  we  have  sometimes 
to  do  with  good  and  earnest  Christian  men  whose 
period  of  probation  has  shown  them  to  have  no  aptitude 
for  colportage."  Elsewhere  in  these  reports  a  col 
porteur  whose  reports  were  lengthy  was  advised  to 
"write  less  and  sell  more." 

Speaking  of  objectors,  a  colporteur  remarked  that 
the  least  dangerous  unbelievers  are  those  who  discuss 
Noah's  ark,  Balaam's  ass,  and  Jonah's  whale.  Fre 
quently  we  find  testimonies  to  the  Word  of  God  from 
surprising  sources.  On  a  train  in  Siberia  one  passenger 
exclaimed:  "Brothers,  those  of  you  who  do  not  possess 
a  copy  of  this  book,  or  have  it  in  your  homes,  are  not 
worthy  of  the  name  of  orthodox  Christian.  In  this 
book  you  will  find  knowledge,  grace,  and  strength  to 
fit  you  for  the  battle  of  life."  Several  fellow  passengers 
then  bought  Testaments. 

On  another  occasion  a  soldier  stimulated  sales  in  a 
train  by  his  exhortation:  "Comrades,  this  book  is  for 
all  the  orthodox,  and  is  the  Book  of  books.  Come,  all 
who  care  for  religion,  and  buy  a  copy!" 

A  colporteur  on  another  train  offered  books  to  a 
group  of  Kirghiz  Tatars,  who  are  Moslems.  One  of 


them  could  read  Russian  characters,  and  taking  a 
copy  of  the  four  Gospels,  he  said:  "I  will  buy  the  book. 
I  know  its  contents,  and  they  are  good."  He  advised  a 
Russian  peasant  sitting  opposite  to  buy  a  book  that 
he  was  examining,  saying,  "In  this  book  you  will  find 
capital  rules  for  daily  life."  The  peasant  did  so,  sur 
prised  that  a  Kirghiz  should  commend  the  Scriptures 
to  him. 

In  a  Cossack  village  the  priest  said  to  his  congrega 
tion:  "Brethren,  we  have  among  us  to-day  a  man  sent 
our  way  with  copies  of  the  Scriptures,  a  colporteur.  I 
hope  that  in  each  house  a  copy  of  the  Word  of  God 
may  be  found.  We  all  have  need  of  this  Book." 

Another  Siberian  incident  encouraged  a  colporteur. 
A  peasant  thanked  him  for  his  persuasion  to  take  a 
New  Testament  the  year  before,  saying  that  he  was 
fleeing  from  sin  and  believed  in  Christ.  He  had  had  a 
discussion  with  a  friend,  Simon,  about  the  passage  in 
Heb.,  ch.  11:  "Women  received  their  dead  by  a 
resurrection:  and  others  .  .  .  that  they  might  ob 
tain  a  better  resurrection."  Simon  supposed  that 
there  must  be  two  resurrections,  but  asked  his  friend 
to  explain  it. 

"I,  how  can  I  explain  it  to  thee?'*  was  the  reply. 
"I'm  no  pope  [priest],  but  I'll  give  thee  my  idea  on  the 
verses.  For  example,  thou  and  I  are  sad  drunkards, 
Simon,  thieves,  swindlers,  and  revelers;  our  wives 
suffer  all  kinds  of  unpleasantness.  They  know  no 
rest,  and  are  always  anxious  for  our  return,  on  which, 
when  we  are  drunk,  we  beat  them  unmercifully.  Now 
all  of  a  sudden,  you,  Simon,  and  I,  Achim,  start  coming 
home  sober  to  our  wives,  and  begin  to  converse  with 
them  about  faith  and  God  and  the  Scriptures,  tell 
them  that  we  are  now  reformed  men,  take  no  part  in 
revels  or  rogueries,  but  become  honest  men,  and  never 
touch  vodka,  or  torment  our  wives.  Is  not  that  also, 


Simon,  a  case  of  returning  to  our  wives,  having  obtained 
a  resurrection  and  shaken  off  sin?"  "I  do  not  know," 
Simon  answered,  "but  I  think  thou  art  talking  sense, 
and  perhaps  there  are  two  resurrections." 

"Six  months  have  passed  since  then,"  said  Achim 
to  the  colporteur,  "but  drink  has  never  passed  his  lips; 
and  this,  mind  you,  is  all  the  result  of  your  selling  me 
that  copy  of  the  New  Testament." 

The  region  east  of  Lake  Baikal  is  the  most  difficult 
section  of  Siberia,  with  a  sparse  and  migratory  popula 
tion.  Some  years  ago  an  order  was  signed  by  the 
commander  in  chief  of  the  Kazan  Military  Circuit: 

1.  Prikaz  (i.  e.,  Order)  No.  509,  December  25,  1912. 

Hereby  is  issued  an  order,  to  be  carried  out  to  the 
very  letter,  without  any  deviation  whatever,  in  all 
companies  and  detachments  of  the  regiments,  at  morn 
ing  prayers  to  read  daily  one  chapter  in  succession  of 
the  Gospels,  in  a  clear,  loud  voice,  and  intelligible 

The  officers  of  the  companies  and  detachments  must 
select  the  men  who  are  to  read  the  Gospels,  as  well  as 
see  that  this  order  is  fulfilled  to  the  letter,  and  duly 
carried  out. 

For  information:  This  order  was  issued  for  the  Kazan 
Military  Circuit  on  December  7,  1912,  under  No.  359. 

The  report  adds  that  if  similar  orders  were  every 
where  in  force,  it  would  pave  the  way  for  colporteurs  to 
gain  access  to  Russian  barracks  in  the  Far  East. 

Just  before  the  Holy  Synod  of  the  Russian  Church 
passed  out  of  existence,  it  issued  a  permit  for  a  reprint 
of  the  1907  edition  of  the  Russian  Bible,  without  the 
Apocryphal  books;  and  the  Synodal  Press,  before  it 
was  declared  the  property  of  the  State,  had  the  sheets 
ready  for  delivery  at  the  end  of  the  year.  This  edition 
of  twenty-five  thousand  Bibles  came  at  a  time  when 
the  stock  of  Bibles  in  various  languages  was  exhausted 


in  Russia,  and  when,  through  the  breakdown  in  trans 
portation,  no  more  could  be  had.  When  the  railways 
reopened  for  a  while  the  B.  F.  B.  S.  books  were  accepted 
free  of  charge,  as  under  the  old  regime. 

Some  anecdotes  are  given  concerning  colportage 
among  Ruthenians,  or  as  we  may  now  designate  them, 
Ukrainians.  One  very  successful  worker  at  Breslau 
said  that  of  all  the  Slav  nationalities  passing  through 
that  center,  these  were  the  most  approachable,  and 
most  receptive  of  gospel  teaching.  Thousands  of 
books  sold  there  find  their  way  to  the  villages  of 
Austria,  and  orders  sometimes  come  to  this  Breslau 
colporteur  from  Galicia.  So,  in  the  barracks  at  Prague, 
a  colporteur  noted  the  avidity  of  Ruthenian  soldiers  to 
possess  the  Scriptures.  Poverty  was  a  hindrance  in 
Galicia.  In  one  village  a  group  of  men  was  formed  to 
purchase  a  Bible  as  common  property;  and  it  was 
arranged  that  they  should  meet  alternately  in  one 
another's  houses  for  the  purpose  of  Bible  study.  Often 
the  colporteur  was  asked  to  tell  stories  from  the  Bible, 
and  he  always  did  so.  One  little  Ruthenian  maid 
bought  a  Gospel,  and  later  the  colporteur  found  her 
reading  aloud  to  a  crowd  of  villagers.  "Here  is  the 
man  from  whom  I  bought  it,"  she  exclaimed,  and  in  a 
few  minutes  he  had  sold  ten  more  Gospels,  a  Bible, 
and  several  New  Testaments.  In  the  Bukowina  a 
saddler  informed  a  colporteur  that  there  were  only 
two  complete  Bibles,  one  of  which  wras  in  the  hands  of 
the  Pope  of  Rome  and  the  other  belonged  to  the 
archbishop  of  Lemberg! 

In  the  Bukowina,  a  colporteur  working  among  Poles 
and  Ruthenians  sold  a  Bible  to  a  Roman  Catholic 
laborer,  who  said,  "I  am  in  perpetual  wonder  about 
this  book,  for  there  is  no  book  in  all  the  world  so  suited 
to  all  conditions  in  life,  none  so  suitable  for  every  rank 
and  class." 


At  a  railway  station  in  Russia  a  Polish  soldier 
recognized  and  hailed  a  colporteur  who  was  offering 
Scriptures  to  the  men  who  were  looking  out  of  the  car 
windows.  He  had  bought  a  Bible  on  that  very  spot, 
on  his  way  to  the  Far  East,  read  it  constantly,  and 
found  in  it  the  way  of  everlasting  life.  Then  he  turned 
to  his  comrades  and  said,  "Here,  brothers,  is  the  man 
who  sold  me  the  Bible,  and  counseled  me  to  read  it 
every  day."  As  a  consequence,  the  colporteur  there 
and  then  sold  ten  more  Polish  Bibles. 

A  Polish  farmer  was  found,  a  man  of  saintly  char 
acter  and  life,  who  had  bought  a  Bible  nine  years 
before  the  colporteur's  interview  with  him.  A  workman 
bought  a  Polish  Wujek  Bible  and  went  from  house  to 
house  reading  it.  This  prepared  the  way,  years  after 
ward,  for  the  colporteur  who  sold  copies  in  that  village. 
In  a  difficult  region,  a  Polish  family  was  visited  that 
needed  a  new  Bible,  since  they  had  been  reading  their 
copy  for  fifteen  years.  Another  family  near  Cracow 
had  treasured  their  copy  for  twenty-five  years,  resisting 
the  priest  in  his  efforts  to  obtain  it.  In  Russian  Poland 
a  family  that  had  been  converted  by  reading  the  Bible 
had  much  trouble  with  their  priest,  who  afterwards 
became  friendly  and  bought  a  Bible  for  himself,  a  rare 
case.  One  enthusiastic  laborer,  a  Pole,  in  East  Prussia, 
treasuring  his  Bible,  declared  that  when  he  returned  to 
Austria  he  would  tell  his  friends  of  the  happiness  he  had 
found  through  believing  in  Jesus  Christ. 

A  curious  story  was  reported  from  Germany.  A 
young  man  who  bought  a  Polish  Bible  was  jeered  at 
by  his  companions  and  took  the  Bible  back  to  the 
colporteur,  who  entreated  in  vain  that  he  should  keep 
it.  He  finally  left  it  on  the  fence  by  the  roadside. 
Some  time  afterwards  this  worker  was  accosted  by  a 
woman  who  wanted  to  see  his  books.  She  had  found 
the  Bible  on  the  fence,  took  it  home,  and  as  it  was  in 


her  language,  she  would  not  be  parted  from  it.  In  the 
region  of  Moscow,  a  man  made  a  special  journey  to 
meet  a  colporteur  and  get  a  Polish  Bible,  as  he  had 
seen  one  in  the  hands  of  a  fellow  villager. 

Yet  with  painful  monotony  yearly  instances  are 
given  of  opposition,  intense,  organized,  from  the 
Polish  Catholic  priesthood,  and  in  all  parts  of  Poland, 
Russian,  Austrian,  or  German.  A  colporteur  mentioned 
a  Pole  who  six  years  before  had  bought  a  Polish  Wujek 
Bible  from  one  of  the  colporteurs  in  eastern  Germany. 
He  discovered  that  he  was  a  great  sinner,  but  that  he 
could  be  saved,  not  by  works  but  by  faith.  A  priest 
visited  him,  took  the  book  from  him,  and  kept  it  for 
some  time.  The  Pole  went  to  law  and  obtained  a  judg 
ment  against  the  priest,  who  had  to  return  the  Bible. 
The  priest  finally  informed  the  Pole  that  he  had  been 
shut  out  of  the  Catholic  Church  and  declared  a  heretic. 

In  a  village  not  far  from  the  town  of  Posen  a  girl 
was  sent  to  a  colporteur  with  a  Testament  that  her 
mother  had  bought,  asking  him  to  refund  the  money. 
The  girl  said  that  her  mother  had  ordered  her  to  throw 
the  book  into  the  fire,  because  it  distinctly  stated  that 
Peter  had  denied  our  Lord.  The  news  went  like  wild 
fire  through  the  village  that  he  was  circulating  books 
slandering  St.  Peter.  He  complained  that  he  was 
hunted  like  a  wild  beast. 

The  priests  visit  all  families  where  the  colporteur 
has  been,  and  burn  all  the  books  he  has  sold.  They 
fulminate  against  him  from  the  pulpit,  warn  school 
children  of  his  coming,  publish  descriptions  of  him  in 
the  press,  so  that  these  workers  are  sometimes  in 
danger  of  their  lives.  Even  the  Wujek,  a  Catholic 
version  in  Polish,  is  seized  and  burned.  One  Bible  was 
taken  from  a  Pole  in  Galicia  to  be  sent  to  Rome  "for 
the  pope's  inspection."  He  was  assured  that  it  might 
be  some  years  before  the  pope  would  send  it  back. 


In  Posen  the  people  regard  tKe  Bible  as  antagonizing 
not  only  the  Catholic  Church  but  also  the  Polish  nation. 
They  say,  "These  are  Protestant  books,  which  are 
meant  to  steal  our  religion,  after  a  law  has  been  made 
to  steal  our  land."  The  people  are  in  fear  of  the  priests, 
lest  they  refuse  them  the  Communion  and  absolution. 
On  a  steamer  going  from  Warsaw  to  Plotsk,  a  man 
asked  a  colporteur  to  come  with  him  to  a  quiet  part  of 
the  vessel  and  give  him  a  Bible  "inconspicuously." 
Often  men  and  women  who  buy  a  Gospel  hide  it  under 
a  pillow,  for  fear  the  priest  might  burn  it.  In  Posen 
the  colporteur  is  often  regarded  as  an  emissary  of 
Prussia,  and  is  hooted  through  the  streets  by  the 
children,  or  pelted  with  stones  and  heavy  missiles. 
Yet  encouraging  hopes  are  expressed  in  one  of  these 
reports  that  the  Poles,  who  are  a  religious  people,  will 
some  day  be  transformed,  when  they  become  a  Bible- 
reading  people.  Some  Poles  declared  to  a  colporteur 
that  they  had  lost  faith  in  their  priests. 

The  same  opposition  from  a  Romish  priesthood  is 
seen  among  Slovenes  and  Croatians.  The  question 
naturally  arises  as  to  whether  this  is  because  the  Bible 
if  known  would  end  their  domination.  We  read  of  a 
woodman  who  bought  a  Slovenian  Testament  with 
eagerness.  After  finishing  work  at  one  place,  a  col 
porteur,  himself  a  Slovene,  found  a  man  following  him 
through  the  forest.  He  had  had  a  copy  of  the  Scriptures 
which  the  priest  had  taken  from  him.  For  more  than 
an  hour  the  colporteur  talked  with  him  in  the  forest, 
and  after  that  Bible  class,  the  Slovene  returned, 
rejoicing  in  his  new  copy  of  the  Word.  Another 
Slovene  in  South  Styria  asked  him  whether  his  books 
contained  anything  about  the  Virgin  Mary.  It  was  a 
lucky  thing  that  he  satisfied  him,  as  it  was  the  man's 
intention  otherwise  to  throw  him  into  a  pond.  In  one 
place  a  priest  preached  against  the  B.  F.  B.  S.,  saying 


that  it  was  the  ruin  of  the  Holy  Catholic  Church. 
"This  Society  offers  us  its  books,  but  they  are  poison 
ous.  Many  have  fallen  from  the  faith  through  this  very 
Society,  whose  books  teach  a  different  faith  than  ours." 

The  B.  F.  B.  S.  report  for  1908  gives  an  account  of 
the  restrictions  and  delays  and  some  instances  of  perse 
cution  in  colportage  work.  The  situation  was  intoler 
able.  In  some  provinces,  regions  visited  by  throngs 
of  American  tourists,  in  Upper  Austria,  the  Tyrol, 
Vorarlberg,  and  Salzburg,  licenses  were  withheld  from 
the  colporteurs.  It  was  a  crime  to  sell  a  Bible  in  Vienna ! 
Yet  Rosegger,  Austria's  greatest  novelist,  said:  "I  can 
never  weary,  all  my  life  long,  of  pointing  to  the  gospel. 
In  Austria,  where  this  Book  lies  fallow,  we  little  dream 
what  lies  therein,  how  it  encourages,  elevates,  and 
inspires  suffering,  wrestling,  hopeless  men.  After  the 
day's  labor  we  lie  down  in  our  beds,  full  of  care.  That 
which  we  have  sought  and  wished  we  have  seldom 
attained,  and  the  morrow  sees  once  more  the  beginning 
of  the  worry  and  struggle  of  existence.  How  would  it 
be,  were  we  to  take  every  evening  that  immortal  book 
which  is  called  the  New  Testament,  and  read  a  chapter 
or  two  aloud  in  our  family  circles  and  speak  about  what 
we  have  read?  In  this  way  we  should  disperse  many  a 
dark  cloud.  We  should  conquer  our  lot,  instead  of 
being  conquered  by  it." 

Croatia  is  rated  as  a  difficult  field.  Yet  a  Turk 
bought  a  Croatian  Bible  from  a  colporteur.  A  gendarme 
bought  a  Croatian  Testament.  A  keeper  of  a  light 
house  ordered  a  Croatian  Bible  after  the  colporteur 
explained  to  him  that  the  Bible  was  a  great  Light. 
Another  was  sold  to  a  burgomaster  who  borrowed  the 
money  for  it  from  a  policeman.  A  young  lieutenant 
said:  "You  sold  a  New  Testament  to  one  of  my  men. 
I  have  been  reading  it  with  great  pleasure."  Later 
on  he  visited  the  colporteur  and  bought  a  Croatian 


Bible.  A  high  government  official  in  one  of  the  courts 
to  whom  he  had  brought  a  Bible  held  it  aloft  and  said 
to  his  friends:  "Gentlemen,  this  is  the  most  important 
book  in  the  world.  It  should  have  its  place  in  every 
house  and  be  read  in  every  family." 

By  contrast  the  colporteur's  work  is  easier  in  Serbia 
and  Bulgaria.  A  report  says:  "In  Serbia  we  enjoy 
perfect  freedom  to  carry  on  our  work.  The  priests  of 
the  Serbian  Greek  Church  are,  as  a  rule,  friendly.  One 
priest  bought  over  two  hundred  New  Testaments  for 
the  members  of  his  community."  Priests  tell  the 
colporteur  of  the  altered  lives  of  those  of  their  flock 
who  study  the  Scriptures;  peasants  speak  of  the  young 
men  of  their  villages  ceasing  to  follow  ungodly  ways 
since  the  Bible  has  been  introduced  among  them.  "As  a 
rule,  the  Serbian  loves  the  Scriptures.  In  this,  he 
resembles  his  Russian  cousin."  Some  Serbians  said 
to  the  Bible  man,  "We  do  not  want  novels,  but  some 
thing  about  Jesus  Christ."  Another  Serb  said:  "I 
would  not  resell  my  Bible  for  ten  times  its  price.  The 
money  which  it  costs  is  as  nothing  to  the  treasure  it 
contains."  This  last  incident  occurred  in  the  wilds  of 
southern  Croatia.  On  a  festival  of  the  Greek  Orthodox 
Church  some  Serbian  young  men  bought  Scriptures  for 
their  partners  in  a  dance. 

The  B.  F.  B.  S.  in  Bulgaria  has  the  northern  half  of 
the  kingdom  as  its  field,  while  the  American  Bible 
Society  works  in  the  southern  part.  Almost  every 
year,  the  B.  F.  B.  S.  reports  work  done  through  the 
American  Methodist  Episcopal  Mission  which  had  its 
headquarters  at  Rustchuk. 

An  officer  in  Rustchuk  said  to  his  men,  "Buy  this, 
read  it  attentively,  and  you  will  find  it  good  both  for 
your  bodies  and  your  souls." 

"But  sir,"  said  a  soldier,  "some  say  it  is  a  Protestant 


"Yes,  it  is  a  Protestant  book,  because  it  always 
protests  against  sin  and  wickedness." 

One  aged  priest  took  a  New  Testament  from  the 
hands  of  the  colporteur  and  held  it  forth  to  the  assem 
bled  people,  saying,  "This  is  the  holy  gospel,  the  record 
of  the  words  of  our  God  and  Saviour,  Jesus  Christ." 
Then  turning  to  the  colporteur  he  said,  "God  bless 
you  abundantly,  my  son,  that  your  work  may  prosper 
to  the  salvation  of  our  beloved  nation." 

A  chorister  said  to  a  colporteur,  "Although  I  have 
been  singing  for  years  in  the  Orthodox  Church,  I  found 
nothing  to  feed  my  soul  upon,  such  as  I  find  now  in 
the  New  Testament." 

A  priest  at  the  Rustchuk  railway  station  said  to  a 
Bible  man,  "You  have  a  blessed  lot  in  being  privileged 
to  distribute  this  Word  of  Life."  Then  turning  to  the 
bystanders  he  said,  "Every  household  which  does  not 
possess  this  Book,  and  read  it  every  day,  is  not  worthy 
to  be  called  a  Christian  household." 

Without  giving  further  instances,  we  may  quote 
once  more:  "Everywhere  we  are  met  by  kind  advice 
and  encouragement  from  those  in  authority  who  wish 
to  strengthen  the  interest  of  the  Bulgarian  people  in 
the  New  Testament." 

The  classic  poem  in  English  that  portrays  the  soul 
of  colportage  is  Whittier's  "The  Vaudois  Teacher." 
It  is  well  adapted  for  missionary  programs. 

"O  lady  fair,  these  silks  of  mine  are    beautiful   arid 

rare — 
The  richest  web  of  the  Indian  loom,  which  beauty's 

queen  might  wear; 
And  my  pearls  are  pure  as  thy  own  fair  neck,  with 

whose  radiant  light  they  vie; 
I  have  brought  them  with  me  a  weary  way — will  my 

gentle  lady  buy?" 


And  the  lady  smiled  on  the  worn  old  man  through  the 

dark  and  clustering  curls 
Which  veiled  her  brow  as  she  bent  to  view  his  silks  and 

glittering  pearls; 
And  she  placed  their  price  in  the  old  man's  hand,  and 

lightly  turned  away, 
But  she  paused  at  the  wanderer's  earnest  call — "My 

gentle  lady,  stay!" 

"O  lady  fair,  I  have  yet  a  gem  which  a  purer  luster 

Than   the  diamond  flash  of   the  jeweled   crown  on 

the  lofty  brow  of  kings — 
A  wonderful  pearl  of  exceeding  price,  whose  virtue 

shall  not  decay, 
Whose  light  shall  be  as  a  spell  to  thee  and  a  blessing 

on  thy  way!" 

The  lady  glanced  at  the  mirroring  steel  where  her  form 

of  grace  was  seen, 
Where  her  eye  shone  clear,  and  her  dark  locks  waved 

their  clasping  pearls  between; 
"Bring  forth  thy  pearl  of  exceeding  worth,  thou  traveler 

gray  and  old, 
And  name  the  price  of  thy  precious  gem,  and  my  page 

shall  count  thy  gold." 

The  cloud  went  off  from  the  pilgrim's  brow,  as  a  small 

and  meager  book, 
Unchased  with  gold  or  gem  of  cost,  from  his  folding 

robe  he  took! 
"Here,  lady  fair,  is  the  pearl  of  price,  may  it  prove  as 

such  to  thee! 
Nay — keep  thy  gold — I  ask  it  not,  for  the  WTord  of 

God  is  free!" 


The  hoary  traveler  went  his  way,  but  the  gift  he  left 

Hath  had  its  pure  and  perfect  work  on  that  high-born 

maiden's  mind, 
And  she  hath  turned  from  the  pride  of  sin  to  the 

lowliness  of  truth, 
And  given  her  human  heart  to  God  in  its  beautiful  hour 

of  youth ! 

And  she  hath  left  the  gray  old  halls,  where  an  evil 

faith  had  power, 
The   courtly   knights   of   her   father's   train,   and   the 

maidens  of  her  bower; 
And  she  hath  gone  to  the  Vaudois  vales  by  lordly  feet 

Where  the  poor  and  needy  of  earth  are  rich  in  the 

perfect  love  of  God! 

A  history  of  colportage  could  be  made  a  compre 
hensive  affair.  We  might  go  back  to  apostolic  days, 
and  refer  to  the  earliest  Christian  itinerants.  Paul 
asked  Timothy  to  bring  with  him  the  "books,  especially 
the  parchments."  Dr.  C.  R.  Gregory  says  that  it 
would  be  difficult  to  discuss  intelligently  the  question 
of  the  spread  and  general  acceptance  of  the  books  of 
the  New  Testament  among  the  Christians  of  the 
various  lands  and  provinces,  without  referring  to  the 
possibilities  of  travel  then  and  there.  He  says  that  a 
Roman  in  Greece  or  Asia  Minor  or  Egypt  would  have 
been  able  to  travel  as  well  as  most  of  the  Europeans 
who  lived  before  1837.  At  that  time  many  people 
traveled  pretty  much  all  over  the  world  that  was  then 
known,  which  was  the  Roman  Empire.  The  freight 
ships  of  the  Mediterranean  were  not  small,  and  they 
carried  large  cargoes  of  grain  with  the  most  punctual 
regularity.  Along  the  splendid  Roman  roads  Caesar 


traveled  from  Rome  to  the  Rhone  in  his  four-wheeled 
carriage  in  about  eight  days,  making  seventy-seven 
miles  a  day.  In  his  two-wheeled  light  carriage  he 
made  ninety-seven  miles  a  day.  An  inscription  tells  of 
a  merchant  in  Hierapolis  who  traveled  from  Asia 
Minor  to  Italy  seventy-two  times. 

At  the  Ecumenical  Conference  in  New  York  in  1900, 
Canon  Edmonds  remarked:  "From  whichever  of  the 
great  missionary  centers  we  start,  from  Antioch,  from 
Alexandria,  from  Carthage,  or  from  Constantinople, 
the  footprints  of  the  translator  of  the  Bible  are  there. 
Beautiful  are  their  feet,  and  their  footprints  are  not 
only  beautiful  but  indelible."  Christian  travelers  then 
did  the  work  of  the  modern  colporteur,  and  spread 
abroad  the  ancient  Gospels  in  the  original  Greek,  also 
in  Coptic,  in  Syriac,  and  in  Latin,  thus  reaching  im 
portant  centers  and  provinces  of  the  Roman  Empire. 
Later,  in  more  distant  regions,  even  beyond  the  boun 
daries  of  the  Romans,  they  carried  Gothic,  Anglo- 
Saxon,  or  the  Slav  Scriptures  of  Cyril  and  Methodius. 
The  stream  of  such  a  history  becomes  broader  when 
we  reach  the  times  of  Wyclif,  the  "morning  star  of  the 

Mrs.  Conant  speaks  of  Wyclif 's  version  as  "England's 
first  Bible,  and  for  a  hundred  and  thirty  years  her  only 
one.  The  great,  practical  Reformer  had  not  urged 
through  this  gigantic  task  as  a  mere  experiment.  He 
had  his  eye  on  a  definite,  practical  result,  the  means 
for  accomplishing  which  were  in  his  own  hands.  .  .  . 
He  had  at  command  one  of  the  most  effective  agencies 
of  modern  publication.  The  active,  hardy,  itinerant 
preachers  whom  he  had  sent  out  to  proclaim  by  word 
of  mouth  glad  tidings  to  the  poor  now  formed  a  band 
of  colporteurs  for  the  written  Word."  Dr.  Fisher  in 
his  history  of  "The  Reformation"  says  of  the  Wyclifites 
or  Lollards,  "They  were  not  exterminated;  but  the 


principles  of  Wyclif  continued  to  have  adherents  in 
the  poor  and  obscure  classes  in  England,  down  to  the 
outbreaking  of  the  Protestant  movement."  Then 
came  the  Reformers,  who  had  a  vast  advantage  over 
their  predecessors  in  the  printing  press,  with  its  streams 
of  Bibles  in  the  principal  tongues  of  Europe,  and  an 
unknown,  immortal  host  of  distributors.  Dr.  Fisher 
says,  again:  "In  all  Protestant  lands,  the  universal 
diffusion  of  the  Bible  .  .  .  has  carried  into  the 
households,  even  of  the  humblest  classes,  a  most  effec 
tive  means  of  mental  stimulation  and  instruction." 

America  may  never  know  how  much  she  owes  to 
colportage.  At  the  time  of  the  organization  of  the 
American  Bible  Society  in  1816  it  was  estimated  that  in 
eight  states  and  territories  alone  there  were  still 
seventy -eight  thousand  families  destitute  of  the  Word 
of  life.  Samuel  J.  Mills  in  his  missionary  journeys 
met  a  man  in  Illinois  who  said  that  he  had  been  trying 
for  ten  years  to  buy  a  Bible.  It  was  brought  home  to 
his  heart  that  this  man  wras  one  thousand  miles  from 
any  place  where  a  Bible  could  be  printed,  and  that 
many  people  in  that  wilderness  must  remain  thus 
destitute  to  the  end  of  their  lives.  Eminent  patriots, 
statesmen,  educators,  were  in  the  convention  that 
organized  the  American  Bible  Society  in  New  York 
City  in  May,  1816.  In  his  "Centennial  History  of  the 
American  Bible  Society,"  Dr.  Henry  Otis  Dwight  says: 
"One  of  the  great  facts  of  Bible  distribution  is  that 
multitudes  who  have  never  read  the  Bible  are  every 
year  persuaded  by  the  colporteurs  to  read  the  Book, 
and  are  led  to  yield  to  its  influence  for  good." 

The  greatest  development  of  colportage  the  world 
had  seen  was  during  the  nineteenth  century,  through 
the  Bible  societies.  The  British  and  Foreign  Bible 
Society  was  organized  at  the  London  Tavern  in  March, 
1804,  and  its  "Centennial  History"  was  written  by 


William  Canton.  A  history  of  colportage  must  very 
largely  employ  the  records  of  the  American  Bible 
Society  and  the  British  and  Foreign  Bible  Society. 
But  for  a  long  time  the  British  and  Foreign  Bible  Society 
had  the  distinction  of  being  greater  than  all  other 
Bible  societies  combined.  In  its  yearly  reports  of 
funds  expended,  workers  employed,  Scriptures  dis 
tributed,  new  translations  or  revisions  of  translations 
of  Scripture,  and  languages  used,  it  far  surpasses  the 
American  Bible  Society.  Where  is  the  Christian  patri 
otism  of  America,  which  can  calmly  allow  so  large  a 
part  of  the  world's  burden  of  need  thus  to  rest  upon 
British  shoulders?  American  enthusiasm  for  its  own 
Bible  Society  seems  feeble  and  faint  in  comparison 
with  the  powerful  organizations,  the  demonstrations  of 
loyalty  and  affection,  that  continually  support  the 
British  and  Foreign  Bible  Society,  which  is  the  greatest 
colportage  agency  in  the  world.  In  the  spring  of  1920 
it  reported  at  its  annual  meeting  that  through  col 
porteurs  in  the  previous  year  it  had  placed  nearly  five 
and  a  quarter  million  volumes  in  the  hands  of  people 
speaking  hundreds  of  tongues.  This  result,  which  is  a 
quarter  of  a  million  greater  than  in  1918,  "appears  the 
more  remarkable  when  we  recollect  that  in  central  and 
eastern  Europe,  as  well  as  in  Russia,  hardly  any  of  our 
colporteurs  have  as  yet  been  able  to  resume  their  work 
since  the  war."  From  the  monthly  magazine  of  the 
British  and  Foreign  Bible  Society,  June  1921,  we 
further  quote  concerning  the  538  versions  in  the 
Society's  historical  table  of  languages:  "Of  these,  160 
fresh  names  have  been  added  since  the  present  century 
began.  The  list  now  includes  the  Bible  completed  in 
135  different  forms  of  speech,  and  the  New  Testa 
ment  completed  in  126  others."  This  statement  shows 
us  all  the  kingdoms  of  the  world  as  the  field  for  col 


The  report  of  the  British  and  Foreign  Bible  Society 
for  1910  states  that  in  1909  the  Holy  Synod  of  Russia 
refused  to  authorize  an  edition  of  the  Russian  Bible 
without  the  Apocrypha.  Accordingly  the  Society  for 
years  could  circulate  in  Russia  only  the  New  Testa 
ment,  or  Pentateuch,  or  Psalms,  or  other  portions,  and 
the  report  says,  "Thus  the  problem  of  the  Apocrypha 
meets  us  at  every  turn  on  the  Continent  of  Europe." 
Between  the  years  1821  and  1820  a  controversy  was 
carried  on  which  resulted  in  the  exclusion  of  the  Apocry 
pha  from  all  Bibles  issued  by  the  British  and  Foreign 
Bible  Society.  At  that  period  the  Scottish  Bible 
societies  withdrew,  later  forming  the  National  Bible 
Society  of  Scotland.  These  two  Bible  societies,  also 
the  American  Bible  Society,  agree  in  this  principle  and 
exclude  the  Apocrypha  from  their  publications.  The 
Jews  did  not  accept  the  Apocrypha  as  inspired,  and 
these  books  are  not  in  Hebrew  Bibles.  Jesus,  also  the 
New  Testament  writers,  freely  quoted  from  or  alluded 
to  the  Old  Testament,  but  never  the  Apocrypha. 

Three  forms  of  the  Apocrypha  exist,  first  in  the 
Greek  Old  Testament  of  the  second  century  B.C.  A 
legend  narrated  that  it  was  made  by  seventy  trans 
lators,  hence  its  name,  the  Septuagint,  from  septuaginta, 
the  Latin  for  "seventy,"  also  its  symbol,  the  "LXX." 
For  hundreds  of  years  this  first  translation  of  the  Old 
Testament  was  the  most  widely  circulated  Bible,  many 
Jews  using  Greek,  though  the  existing  copies  are  from 
Christian  sources.  Many  leading  Fathers  of  the 
Church  in  western  Europe,  including  Augustine  him 
self,  never  knew  Greek.  In  the  fifth  century  A.D. 
Jerome,  the  most  learned  of  ancient  translators, 
finished  the  Latin  Vulgate,  and  included  the  Apocrypha, 
with  some  changes  from  those  of  the  "LXX."  For 
flip;  Viilxm.te  editions  omit  tlif  Third  Bonk  of 


not  inspired,  and  that  "it  requires  the  utmost  prudence 
to  extract  gold  from  mud."  But  he  placed  after 
Revelation,  at  the  close  of  the  book,  III  and  IV  Esdras, 
and  the  Prayer  of  Manasses,  which  both  Catholics 
and  Protestants  reject  as  not  canonical.  The  West 
minster  Confession  of  Faith,  in  the  first  chapter,  says, 
4 'The  books  commonly  called  Apocrypha,  not  being  of 
divine  inspiration,  are  no  part  of  the  canon  of  Scripture; 
and  are  therefore  of  no  authority  in  the  Church  of  God, 
nor  are  to  be  any  otherwise  approved,  or  made  use  of, 
than  other  human  writings."  The  Council  of  Trent 
said,  "If  anyone  receive  not,  as  sacred  and  canonical, 
the  said  books  entire  with  all  their  parts  as  they  have 
been  used  to  be  read  in  the  Catholic  Church,  and  as 
they  are  contained  in  the  old  Latin  vulgar  edition,  let 
him  be  anathema."  Accordingly,  we  have  the  list  of 
the  LXX;  then  also,  with  changes  in  arrangement  and 
verses  (for  instance,  in  Esther) ,  in  the  Vulgate  editions ; 
and  lastly,  in  modern  Catholic  Bibles,  as  in  the  English 
Douay,  the  list  of  the  Vulgate,  but  omitting  the  three 
above  mentioned.  Thus  we  have  eleven:  Tobit, 
Judith,  Wisdom,  Ecclesiasticus,  Baruch  (including  the 
Epistle  of  Jeremiah),  the  two  books  of  the  Maccabees, 
the  additions,  or  "The  Rest  of  ...  Esther"  and  three 
additions  to  the  book  of  Daniel,  namely,  the  Song  of 
the  Three  Holy  Children,  The  History  of  Susanna,  and 
Bel  and  the  Dragon.  There  are  no  Apocrypha  for  the 
New  Testament,  the  problem  wholly  concerning  the 
spurious  additions  to  the  Old  Testament. 

The  late  Dr.  B.  B.  Warfield's  explanation  of  inspira 
tion  was  that  it  is  "the  fundamental  quality  of  the 
written  Scriptures,  by  virtue  of  which  they  are  the 
Word  of  God,  and  are  clothed  with  all  the  character 
istics  which  properly  belong  to  the  Word  of  God. 
Accordingly,  the  very  words  of  Scripture  are  accounted 
authoritative  and  'not  to  be  broken';  its  prophecies 


are  sure;  and  its  whole  contents,  historical  as  well  as 
doctrinal  and  ethical,  not  only  entirely  trustworthy 
but  designedly  framed  for  the  spiritual  profit  of  all 
ages."  On  the  other  hand,  the  reader's  attention  is 
invited  to  passages  of  the  Apocrypha,  showing  errors 
of  fact  and  history,  errors  of  doctrine,  where  falsehood 
or  other  crimes  are  praised,  morality  based  on  expedi 
ency,  alms  commended  as  atonement  for  sin,  and 
approval  of  prayers  for  the  dead,  or  to  saints.  A  vast 
amount  of  evangelical  literature  is  safer  and  saner  than 
these  writings. 

In  Tobit  1  :  4,  5,  we  learn  that  the  ten  tribes  revolted 
from  Judah  under  Jeroboam  in  Tobit's  youth,  making 
him  two  hundred  and  seventy  years  old  at  the  time  of 
the  Assyrian  Captivity.  But,  ch.  14  :  2,  he  died  at 
the  age  of  a  hundred  and  two  years,  (or  in  LXX 
14:11,  a  hundred  and  fifty -eight  years.)  An  angel, 
ch.  12  : 15,  calls  himself  Raphael,  also  one  of  the  cap 
tives  of  the  tribe  of  Nephthali,  ch.  7  :  3,  also  ch.  5  : 18, 
that  he  is  Azarias,  son  of  Ananias,  and  as  Dr.  W.  H. 
Green  remarks,  contrary  to  all  analogy  of  angels'  visits, 
goes  on  foot  with  Tobit,  three  hundred  miles. 

In  Judith  1:5,  Nebuchadnezzar  reigns  in  Nineveh, 
whereas  Babylon  was  his  capital.  Holofernes'  march 
was  a  "most  extraordinary  zigzag."  Joachim  or  Elia- 
chim  is  said  to  have  been  the  contemporary  high  priest, 
"whereas  there  was  no  high  priest  of  this  name  until 
after  the  Exile,  and  then  the  kingdom  of  the  Medes, 
ch.  1  : 1,  had  passed  away  " 

The  story  of  Esther  begins,  ch.  1:3,  in  the  third 
year  of  the  king's  reign,  Esther  is  presented  to  the 
king,  ch.  2  : 16-21,  in  the  seventh  year,  but  in  the 
Apocryphal  addition,  ch.  11:2,  Mordecai  is  rewarded 
in  the  second  year.  The  cause  of  Hainan's  hatred 
for  Mordecai,  ch.  3,  is  contradicted  by  the  addition, 
ch.  12  :  6.  And,  ch.  16  :  10,  Hainan  is  a  Macedonian, 


v.  14,  seeking  to  transfer  the  Persian  kingdom  to  the 

Wisdom  claims  to  have  been  written  by  Solomon, 
ch.  9  :  7,  8,  "Thou  hast  chosen  me  to  be  a  king.  .  .  . 
and  hast  commanded  me  to  build  a  temple."  In 
ch.  15  :  14,  "The  enemies  of  thy  people,  that  hold  them 
in  subjection,"  contradicts  I  Kings  4  : 20-25,  since 
there  was  no  such  subjection  in  his  time.  He  wrote 
in  Hebrew;  but  in  the  LXX  ch.  4:2  are  words 
borrowed  from  Grecian  games  not  in  use  till  long  after 
Solomon's  time:  "It  triumpheth  crowned  for  ever,  win 
ning  the  reward  of  undefiled  conflicts."  See  also  ch. 
10  : 12.  There  are  imaginary  additions  to  the  miracles, 
ch.  16  : 20,  21 :  "Thou  didst  send  them  from  heaven 
bread  .  .  .  agreeing  to  every  taste  .  .  .  and 
serving  to  the  appetite  of  the  eater,  tempered  itself  to 
every  man's  likings."  So,  in  the  sixteenth  and  seven 
teenth  chapters  are  additions  to  the  words  of  Moses 
concerning  the  plagues  of  Egypt.  A  wrong  significance 
is  given  to  the  priest's  dress,  "a  virtue  which  was 
due  only  to  his  office  and  mediation,"  ch.  18  :24,  "for 
in  the  long  garment  was  the  whole  w^orld."  Chapter 
10  : 4  mentions  the  murder  of  Abel  as  the  cause  of  the 
Flood.  In  ch.  14  :  15  idolatry  is  traced  to  fathers 
making  images  of  their  dead  children,  instead  of  the 
reason  in  Rom.  1  :  21,  "Their  foolish  heart  was  dark 
ened."  There  are  also  quotations,  somewhat  modified, 
from  Isaiah  who  lived  long  after  Solomon:  ch.  13  :  11 
from  Isa.,  ch.  44;  ch.  11  :  23  from  Isa.  40  :  15;  ch. 
5  : 18-21  from  Isa.  59  : 16,  17. 

Baruch,  a  "pious  fraud,"  ch.  1  :  15,  quotes  the  prayer 
of  Daniel  from  his  ninth  chapter;  and  ch.  2  :  11  quotes 
Neh.  9  : 10,  whereas,  Nehemiah  and  Daniel  lived  in 
later  times  than  Baruch  and  Jeremiah.  Baruch  1  : 
1-3  says  that  Baruch  was  in  Babylon  when  Jerusalem 
was  taken,  contradicting  Jer.  43  : 6,  7,  saying  that 


Jeremiah  and  Baruch  were  taken  to  Egypt.  Baruca 
1  :  7-10  refers  to  the  Temple  as  still  standing;  but 
the  Temple  was  burned  when  Jerusalem  was  capturec . 
After  the  Exile,  Ezra  1  :  7,  Cyrus  brought  forth  and 
sent  back  to  Jerusalem  the  vessels  which  had  beei 
taken  by  Nebuchadnezzar;  Baruch  1  :  8  says  they  wera 
sent  back  in  the  time  of  Jeremiah.  Baruch  1  : 14  says 
this  book  was  to  be  read  in  the  Temple  of  the  Lore , 
but  there  is  no  trace  of  such  a  custom  among  the  Jews. 
The  Epistle  of  Jeremiah  inserted  in  a  different  plac3 
from  its  position  in  the  LXX,  says,  Baruch  6  :  2,  that 
the  Captivity  in  Babylon  was  to  be  seven  generations, 
though  Jeremiah  prophesied  that  it  would  be  seventy 

Of  the  additions  to  Daniel,  The  Song  of  the  Three 
Children,  inserted  in  the  third  chapter,  is  not  appro 
priate  to  its  occasion,  which  was  their  deliverance  from 
the  fiery  furnace;  for  instance,  "O  ye  ice  and  snow 
.  .  .  O  whales,  and  all  that  mo  vein  the  waters!"  Verso 
47,  of  Catholic  Bibles  adds  a  statement  not  warranted 
by  Daniel:  that  the  flame  mounted  up  above  the 
furnace  forty  and  nine  cubits.  The  History  of  Susanna, 
ch.  13,  vs.  54,  55,  58,  59,  quoted  by  Jerome,  has 
plays  upon  Greek  words  in  the  LXX,  demonstrating 
clearly  its  Greek  origin,  whereas  Daniel  was  written 
mostly  in  Hebrew,  with  chapters  or  passages  in  Ar 
amaic.  The  third  of  these  additions,  styled  by  Saint 
Jerome,  the  "fable"  of  Bel  and  the  Dragon,  Dan., 
ch.  14,  opposes  the  statements  of  Daniel  in  several  par 
ticulars.  The  two  books  ascribe  the  hatred  of  the  great 
men  against  Daniel  to  completely  different  causes;  as 
one  writer  says,  "Both  cannot  be  true;  and  we  are  in  no 
difficulty  as  to  which  we  should  give  the  preference." 

Historians  do  not  confirm  the  statement,  I  Mace., 
1:6,  7,  as  to  the  death  of  Alexander.  And  con 
cerning  the  Romans,  I  Mace.  8  :  16  is  incorrect,  "And 


that  they  committed  their  government  to  one  man 
every  year,  who  ruled  over  all  their  country."  Anti- 
ochus  dies  in  Babylonia,  I  Mace.  6  :  4,  16,  but  is  be 
headed  in  Persia,  II  Mace.  1  :  13,  16,  and  dies  of  a 
plague  in  the  mountains,  II  Mace.  9  :  28.  II  Macca 
bees  abounds  in  fables,  for  instance,  about  the  sacred 
fire,  ch.  1  :  19,  about  Jeremiah  in  Mount  Nebo,  ch. 
2  : 4,  and  about  the  apparition  that  prevented  Helio- 
dorus  from  invading  the  sanctity  of  the  Temple, 
ch.  3  :  25.  The  LXX  in  II  Mace.  1  :  18  says  more 
plainly  than  the  Vulgate  and  Catholic  Bibles,  that 
Nehemiah  built  the  Temple  and  the  altar,  which  were 
built  long  before  he  came  from  Persia,  Ezra  3  :  2. 

Concerning  any  claim  to  inspiration,  see  II  Mace. 
15  : 39,  almost  the  end  of  the  book,  "Here  will  I  make 
an  end,  and  if  I  have  done  well,  and  as  is  fitting  the 
story,  it  is  that  which  I  desired:  but  if  slenderly  and 
meanly,  it  is  that  which  I  could  attain  unto."  Calvin 
in  his  "Antidote  to  the  Council  of  Trent"  exclaimed, 
"How  very  alien  this  acknowledgement  from  the 
majesty  of  the  Holy  Spirit!"  Also  the  prologue  to 
Ecclesiasticus :  "Wherefore  let  me  entreat  you  to  read 
it  with  favour  and  attention,  and  to  pardon  us,  where 
in  we  may  seem  ...  to  come  short  of  some  words. 
.  .  .  For  the  same  things  uttered  in  Hebrew,  and 
translated  into  another  tongue,  have  not  the  same 
force  in  them."  Perplexity  arising  from  the  absence  of 
a  prophet  is  alluded  to  in  I  Mace.  4  :  46;  9  :  27;  14  :  41.' 

More  serious  than  errors  of  fact  are  errors  of  doctrine. 
In  Tobit  the  angel's  falsehood  has  been  mentioned. 
Judith,  ch.  9  :  13,  prays  for  a  blessing  upon  her  false 
hood:  "Do  thou  strike  him  by  the  graces  of  my 
lips."  By  the  way,  this  book  is  the  only  evidence 
in  history  of  the  existence  of  such  a  place  as 
Bethulia.  Judith's  conduct  is  praised.  Ch.  15:10-12. 
In  ch.  9,  she  praises  the  crime  of  Simeon,  which  is  con- 


demned  in  Gen.,  ch.  49.  Yet,  ch.  11  :  10-13,  a  breaci 
of  the  ceremonial  law,  is  thought  a  deadly  sin.  Ii 
Tobit  6  :  19  the  angel  advises  him  to  lay  the  liver  of 
the  fish  on  the  fire,  that  the  evil  spirit  may  be  driven 
away;  with  which  we  may  compare  Matt.  17  :21, 
"This  kind  goeth  not  out  but  by  prayer  and  fast 
ing."  And  ch.  12  :  12,  the  angel  as  mediator  con 
veyed  his  prayer  to  the  Lord,  contrary  to  I  Tim, 
2  : 5,  "one  mediator."  As  to  alms,  Tobit  12  :  9,  "Alms 
delivereth  from  death,  and  the  same  is  that  whicii 
purge th  away  sins,  and  maketh  to  find  mercy  and  lifo 
everlasting."  See  also  ch.  4  :  9-12  and  Ecclus.  3  :  33.  In 
Wisdom,  it  seems  that  the  doctrine  of  emanation  is 
taught,  ch.  7  :  25;  also  the  preexistence  of  souls,  ch. 
8  :  19,  20;  also,  the  creation  of  the  world  from 
preexisting  matter,  ch.  11 :18;  and  that  "the  corruptible 
body  presseth  down  the  soul,"  ch.  9  :  15.  Ecclus. 
12:5-7,  "give  not  to  the  ungodly:  hold  back  thy 
bread,  and  give  it  not  unto  him,"  differs  from  the 
Sermon  on  the  Mount.  So  also,  ch.  33  :  25-30,  advising 
cruelty  to  slaves,  and  the  expression  of  hatred,  ch. 
50  :  27,  28.  Its  morality  is  based  on  expediency,  ch. 
38  :  16-18,  "Let  tears  fall  down  over  the  dead  .  .  . 
use  lamentation,  as  he  is  worthy,  and  that  a  day  or  two, 
lest  thou  be  evil  spoken  of."  Baruch  3  :  4  has  been 
used  as  a  proof  text  for  praying  to  saints:  "Hear  now 
the  prayers  of  the  dead  Israelites."  See  also  II  Mace. 
12  :  41-46,  "It  is  therefore  a  holy  and  a  wholesome 
thought  to  pray  for  the  dead,  that  they  may  be  loosed 
from  sins,"  and  ch.  15  :  14,  the  vision  of  Jeremiah,  the 
dead  prophet,  praying  for  Israel.  II  Mace.  14  :  37-46 
commends  the  suicide  of  Razias.*  These  quotations 
complete  a  chain  of  evidence  showing  errors  in  all 
these  apocryphal  books. 

*  Dr.  W.  H.  Green  of  Princeton,  New  Jersey,  "General  Introduc 
tion  to  the  Old  Testament,  The  Canon." 

Chapter  III 

THE  views  of  Dr.  Montgomery  as  to  the  principles 
of  missionary  work  among  foreigners  are  well  known 
among  his  brethren.  His  great  emphasis  was  for  the 
gospel  and  its  proclamation.  From  unpublished  por 
tions  of  a  manuscript  that  he  prepared  we  have  here 
his  statements  of  the  true  and  only  foundation  for  all 
this  work: 

"From  a  forest-clearing,  river-trafficking  hamlet, 
Pittsburgh  has  sprung  forward  within  a  century  to 
leadership  in  the  world's  great  centers,  industrially, 
commercially,  educationally,  and  religiously.  The 
question  of  what  she  may  be  in  the  future,  and  what 
her  influence  on  the  world  will  be,  will  depend  upon 
whether  her  citizens  have  the  courage,  at  any  cost  to 
themselves,  to  maintain  for  themselves  and  transmit 
to  their  children  the  heritage  of  faith  in  and  devotion  to 
the  God  of  their  fathers,  by  the  dissemination  of  the 
teachings  of  an  open  Bible;  against  such  the  gates  of 
hell  shall  not  prevail."  He  adds  his  conviction  that  the 
people  have  such  courage,  and  that  the  thing  will  be 
done.  He  further  discusses  the  obligation  of  the 

"  'As  the  Father  hath  sent  me  into  the  world,  even 
so  send  I  you,'  was  spoken  to  the  Church,  and  nothing 
short  of  a  full  surrender  and  a  complete  dedication  on 
the  part  of  the  Church  can  possibly  please  him  who 
gave  the  commission  while  he  himself  stood  within 
the  shadow  of  Calvary.  The  whole  life  and  purpose 
of  the  Son  of  God  in  this  world  was  an  interpretation 
of  the  character  of  God  and  a  manifestation  of  the 



immeasurable  love  of  God  for  the  human  race  and  r. 
revelation  of  the  unspeakable  hatred  of  God  for  sii 
which  is  the  curse  of  that  race.  When  Christ  came  intc  > 
the  world  it  was  because  'God  so  loved  the  world,  thai 
he  gave  his  only  begotten  Son,  that  whosoever  believetl 
in  him  should  not  perish,  but  have  everlasting  life.'  .  . 
It  is  therefore  clearly  the  business  of  the  Church  to  inter 
pret  to  the  whole  world  the  character  and  purpose  of 
Christ,  as  it  was  his  business  to  interpret  the  heart  of 
God  the  Father.  'Go  .  .  .  make  disciples  of  al' 
nations' — this  is  the  commission.  It  is  not  difficult  oi 
interpretation.  There  is  no  ambiguity  here. 

"The  field  is  'white  already  unto  harvest.'  No  such 
opportunity  was  ever  before  given  to  any  nation  as  is 
given  to  the  Church  now  in  the  United  States  of  Amer 
ica.  If  to  the  stranger  within  our  gates  is  given  the 
helping  hand  as  he  comes  with  the  hand  of  help,  if  the 
nations  of  the  world  mingling  in  the  toil  of  American 
industry  learn  not  to  hate  one  another,  if  old  mis 
understandings  which  have  caused  bloodshed  and 
bitterness  may  be  corrected,  if  somehow  there  may 
come  out  of  the  'melting  pot'  a  flow  of  humanity  that 
has  been  freed  from  dross  and  superstition,  if  the 
blight  of  centuries  of  spiritual  tyranny  and  priestcraft 
can  be  cured  by  the  illumination  of  the  intellect  and 
the  regeneration  of  the  soul,  then  will  American  liberty 
be  secure,  and  eastern  and  southern  Europe  will  be 
aroused  to  greater  and  better  things  through  the  return 
of  their  sons,  who  in  America,  like  Onesimus  with  Paul 
at  Rome,  have  come  back  in  newness  of  life  and  purpose 
to  enrich  the  homeland  in  that  which  is  worth  far  more 
than  gold." 

A  few  years  prior  to  the  establishment  of  Presby 
terian  work  among  Slavs  in  western  Pennsylvania, 
missions  had  been  begun  among  the  French  and  Italians 
in  Pittsburgh  and  Allegheny  Presbyteries.  History 


must  here  record  the  labors  of  a  faithful  man  of  God, 
Rev.  John  Launitz,  for  many  years  pastor  in  Alle 
gheny  of  the  German  Presbyterian  Church,  who  could 
also  preach  in  English,  French,  and  Italian. 

Slavs  in  the  Pittsburgh  region  outnumber  French 
and  Italians  combined.  From  the  time  that  Slav 
evangelization  was  first  suggested  here,  Dr.  W.  L. 
McEwan,  pastor  of  the  Third  Presbyterian  Church, 
Pittsburgh,  was  its  leader  and  champion.  If  docu 
mentary  evidence  of  this  were  desired,  it  might  be 
seen  in  two  of  his  published  discourses,  the  first  being 
an  address  before  the  Presbyterian  Synod  of  Pennsyl 
vania,  October,  1902.  Here  he  describes  the  nature  and 
the  needs  of  the  newer  immigration:  "The  first  diffi 
culty  that  confronted  us  in  our  efforts  was  the  lack  of 
qualified  men  to  w^ork  among  these  people.  It  is 
hardly  possible  to  secure  from  the  old  country  Protes 
tant  ministers  to  undertake  unorganized  mission  work. 
After  much  correspondence  [doubtless  largely  conducted 
by  Dr.  McEwan  himself]  we  were  able  to  secure  Rev. 
V.  Losa,  to  whose  wisdom,  spirituality,  tact,  and 
earnestness  we  are  indebted  largely  for  the  progress 
that  has  been  made.  ...  It  was  wuth  great  difficulty 
he  was  induced  to  leave  a  settled,  comfortable  pas 
torate  in  Nebraska  to  begin  a  work  among  the  thou 
sands  of  people  single-handed,  as  far  as  human  help 
was  concerned,  and  with  no  possible  introduction  to 
those  among  whom  he  was  to  work.*'  He  then  quotes 
Dr.  Losa's  own  account  of  his  method  of  work  as  he 
began  at  Schoenville,  a  short  distance  from  Coraopolis, 
near  Pittsburgh: 

"At  first  my  work  consisted  of  visiting  only.  I 
announced  services  at  once,  but  for  several  weeks  I 
had  no  audience.  I  saw  plainly  that  my  work  must  be 
personal.  When  I  noticed  that  I  was  welcome  in  a 
house,  I  revisited  it  again  and  again,  and  prolonged  my 


visits.  I  read  and  explained  the  Scriptures  to  those 
who  would  listen,  and  thus  interested  them  in  the  Word 
of  God.  Soon  they  began  to  read  the  Bible  then- 
selves,  and  ask  questions  on  my  next  visit.  My  visits 
lasted  often  three  hours  at  a  time.  In  a  few  months 
four  of  the  men  gave  their  hearts  to  Christ.  Others 
were  reached  in  the  same  way.  Very  soon  after  I 
started  my  work  I  made  it  a  point  to  visit  the 
once  a  week.  There  was  often  a  Slav  among  the 
inmates.  Once  I  met  a  young  man  in  the  hospital, 
part  of  whose  hand  was  amputated.  He  was  filled 
with  joy  when  he  learned  that  I  was  a  Protestant 
clergyman.  He  purchased  a  Bible  at  once  and  read  it 
daily.  I  followed  this  young  man  from  the  hospital 
to  his  place  of  boarding,  and  to-day  we  have  about  ten 
young  men  in  one  mission  reached  through  this  hospital 
patient.  I  am  thoroughly  convinced  that  it  requires  a 
steady  perseverance  with  individuals  to  be  successful 
in  this  work,  and,  of  course,  a  man  unable  to  speak 
their  language  cannot  do  the  work. 

"The  English  mission  in  the  town,  before  I  came 
there,  was  utterly  inadequate.  There  is  another  point 
I  emphasize.  As  soon  as  a  man  was  converted,  I  con 
vinced  him  that  it  was  his  duty  to  bring  others  to  Christ, 
and  taught  him  the  different  ways  in  which  he  might 
hope  to  do  this:  First,  to  live  an  exemplary  Christian 
life;  second,  not  to  lose  an  opportunity  to  give  his  per 
sonal  testimony  to  the  power  of  Christ  to  save;  third, 
to  distribute  tracts  and  take  an  order  for  a  Bible 
whenever  anyone  inquired  for  it.  In  this  way,  of  course, 
I  was  helped  immensely,  and  when  other  duties  came 
to  me  and  I  was  unable  to  make  so  many  and  so  long 
visits,  there  were  substitutes  at  work  among  the  con 
verts.  In  the  summer  of  1901  our  audiences  were  so 
large  that  crowds  were  standing  on  the  street.  Ever 
since,  our  quarters  have  been  filled  with  regular  attend- 


ants.  If  many  of  the  regular  attendants  had  not  moved 
away  during  the  last  eighteen  months,  I  would  have 
been  very  much  embarrassed  as  to  how  to  shelter  them, 
as  our  little  room  is  packed  when  forty  members  are 
present.  Sometimes  when  we  had  fifty  present  some 
had  to  be  placed  in  the  adjoining  kitchen. 

"Our  converts  come  from  Roman  Catholic,  Greek 
Catholic,  Lutheran,  and  Reformed  people.  The  plain 
est  preaching  of  the  simple  gospel  will  reach  these 
people.  It  must  be  taken  for  granted  when  you 
address  them  that  they  do  not  know  even  the  alphabet 
of  Christianity,  and  when  they  are  converted  they 
will  tell  you  that  you  were  right.  Protestant  or  not 
Protestant,  they  are  spiritually  dead,  ignorant  of  the 
fundamental  Christian  doctrines  and  full  of  super 
stition.  I  consider  it  a  great  mistake  to  gather  the 
nominal  Protestants,  irrespective  of  their  spiritual  con 
dition,  into  a  church.  Sometimes  this  is  done  with  a 
view  of  teaching  them  to  live  better  lives,  when  already 
they  are  in  the  full  communion  of  the  Church,  but 
repeatedly  this  method  has  proved  to  be  a  failure. 
There  are  many  obstacles  and  hindrances  in  this  work. 
The  people  do  not  care  for  you  at  first,  and  many  of 
them  become  your  enemies  and  hate  you  when  you 
begin  to  teach  them  to  abandon  their  vices.  Then 
priests  and  nuns  try  to  neutralize  your  work.  Beer 
and  whiskey  men  see  an  enemy  in  you,  and  multiply 
their  efforts  to  make  the  people  drink  heavily;  but 
against  all  these  and  other  hindrances  stands  the 
ever-powerful  gospel.  It  requires  that  one  firmly 
believe  that  God  means  what  he  says,  and  that  he 
will  fulfill  his  promises.  Had  I  not  believed  this  most 
sincerely  and  firmly  when  I  started  this  work  I  would 
have  abandoned  it  before  I  began  it.  From  the  human 
standpoint  it  was  just  as  the  physician  in  Schoenville 
told  me  upon  my  arrival.  He  said,  'You  had  better  go 


back  to  Nebraska,  as  the  obstacles  are  insurmountable 
here.'  Now  three  of  my  young  men,  two  of  whom 
have  been  employed  for  months  as  colporteurs,  are  in 
school  with  a  view  of  being  educated  as  missionaries." 

Dr.  McEwan  states  that  "during  the  year  of  1902 
six  young  men,  converts  under  the  preaching  of  Mr. 
Losa,  have  been  employed  as  colporteurs  and  their 
work  has  been  remarkably  successful.  With  their  help 
and  the  help  of  the  woman  missionary,  Mr.  Losa  has 
started  and  is  carrying  on  five  Sunday  schools  about 
Schoenville.  Cottage  prayer  meetings  are  also  held,  as 
well  as  the  regular  prayer  meetings  and  the  two  church 
services.  A  suitable  building  for  the  work  at  Schoenville 
is  now  under  construction,  wThich  will  be  provided  with 
classrooms,  night-school  rooms,  bathrooms,  and  an  am 
ple  auditorium  seating  250  people." 

His  later  discourse,  published  in  1906,  shows  progress 
in  the  work.  His  text  was  Num.  15  :  16:  "One  law 
and  one  manner  shall  be  for  you,  and  for  the  stranger 
that  sojourneth  with  you."  "The  American  govern 
ment  has  one  law  and  one  manner  for  its  citizens  and 
the  strangers  that  sojourn  among  them.  The  American 
public-school  system  receives  the  children  of  every 
nationality,  only  requiring  that  they  be  able  to  speak 
enough  English  to  understand  and  recite.  It  is  to  the 
credit  of  these  people,  and  by  the  mercy  of  God, 
rather  than  by  our  own  wisdom  and  provision,  that 
there  are  as  yet  so  few  breaches  of  the  law  and  so  little 
to  cause  us  apprehension.  Many  of  them  will  learn 
to  love  this  new  country  of  freedom.  .  .  .  There  are 
others  who  form  organizations  to  keep  up  their  alle 
giance  to  the  land  from  which  they  came,  and  who  have 
no  appreciation  of  the  blessings  they  receive  here.  It  is 
a  problem  for  all  statesmen  and  all  patriots  and  all 
educators,  and  for  every  citizen." 

He  here  speaks  of  three  ministers  laboring  among 


the  Slavs,  of  a  membership  of  130  in  the  mother  church 
at  Schoenville,  of  nine  young  men  from  its  ranks  who 
were  studying  for  the  ministry,  of  ten  women  mission 
aries  working  in  nine  different  schools;  and  he  gives 
facts  about  the  colporteurs,  some  of  whom  from  time  to 
time  had  been  lent  to  other  presbyteries.  All  this  work 
was  then  under  the  " Joint  Committee  of  the  Presby 
teries  of  Pittsburgh  and  Allegheny."  In  1904  a  Pres 
byterian  Missionary  Training  School  was  begun,  where 
young  women  of  various  nationalities  could  be  pre 
pared  to  do  mission  work  among  their  own  people. 
Dr.  McEwan  had  pleaded  for  this.  He  now  reports, 
"A  suitable  building  in  Allegheny  has  been  leased;  a 
qualified  matron  is  in  charge." 

Finally  he  makes  this  appeal :  "It  is  enough  to  break 
the  hearts  of  those  who  are  familiar  with  the  great  needs, 
and  who  see  the  open  doors  that  constitute  providential 
calls,  to  attempt  to  carry  on  this  work  with  the  inade 
quate  support  that  is  provided.  The  feeling  is  constant 
that  if  only  the  facts  could  be  put  before  the  Christian 
people  who  have  means,  the  responses  would  make  the 
funds  to  be  multiplied.  In  the  name  of  common 
humanity  we  can  make  our  appeal  for  these  people 
whose  physical  surroundings  are  incompatible  with 
health  and  morality.  In  the  name  of  patriotism  we 
can  appeal  that  these  people  be  educated  into  the 
responsibility  of  citizenship,  and  that  the  great  Chris 
tian  institutions  of  the  civilization  which  we  enjoy 
may  not  be  broken  down  by  the  sheer  weight  of  igno 
rance  and  alienage.  In  the  name  of  your  own  safety 
and  security  we  can  appeal  for  help  for  these  people. 
Now,  by  reason  of  the  prosperity  and  activity  in  indus 
trial  life,  they  are  kept  busy  and  measurably  con 
tented.  If  some  time  of  depression  and  idleness  should 
come,  unless  they  are  educated  and  Christianized,  it 
does  not  require  the  eye  of  a  prophet  or  the  spirit  of  a 


pessimist  to  foresee  incalculable  dangers.  In  the  name 
of  the  Lord  Jesus  Christ,  whose  salvation  is  for  all  men, 
who  came  into  this  world  "to  seek  and  to  save  that  which 
is  lost,"  who  shed  his  blood  for  the  remission  of  sins, 
who  commanded  us  to  preach  the  gospel  to  every 
creature,  we  can  appeal  to  you  to  help  these  poor  and 
needy  souls.  It  is  difficult  to  see  how  a  stronger  appeal 
could  be  made  to  a  Christian  than  to  let  the  bare  facts 
concerning  the  number  and  the  needs  of  these  people 
speak  for  themselves." 

One  striking  fact  in  the  history  of  this  Schoenville 
Mission  throws  a  flood  of  light  on  the  evangelical 
purpose  of  all  this  work.  When  the  building  that  Dr. 
McEwan  mentions  was  planned,  one  patron  contrib 
uted  sixteen  hundred  dollars  to  include  a  swimming 
pool.  The  time  of  the  workers  was  more  and  more 
absorbed  in  the  spiritual  part  of  their  routine,  in  prayer 
meetings,  in  Bible  classes,  and  the  like.  This  swimming 
pool  then  became  a  distraction  and  a  burden.  At 
last  they  abandoned  the  care  of  it,  and  closed  it  up. 
More  power  to  such  institutions !  Many  chapters  could 
be  written  of  very  different  management  in  other 
institutions  which  ask  the  help  of  Christian  men,  where 
the  physical,  the  recreational,  has  crowded  out  the 
higher,  the  spiritual  work;  where  the  swimming  pool 
has  eclipsed,  or  rather  submerged,  the  prayer  meeting; 
where  young  foreigners  may  learn  to  dance  or  to  play 
billiards,  but  are  not  led  to  the  Bible  class. 

The  story  of  the  way  in  which  the  Training  School 
was  transferred  to  Coraopolis  should  be  remembered. 
At  the  beginning  of  his  work,  it  was  necessary  for 
Dr.  Losa  to  choose  a  residence  in  Coraopolis,  no  suitable1 
house  being  available  at  Schoenville.  Scarcely  any 
foreigners  were  there,  but  gradually  some  servant  girls 
and  day  laborers,  Slavs,  began  to  locate  there,  and 
-Dr.  Losa  succeeded  in  gathering  them  for  regular 


prayer  meetings.  Mrs.  Losa,  herself  an  experienced 
missionary,  rendered  invaluable  assistance.  At  one 
of  these  prayer  meetings  some  asked  why  they  might 
not  have  a  church  building  of  their  own  in  Coraopolis, 
instead  of  going  for  such  services  to  Schoenville.  Dr. 
Losa  explained  that  the  people  of  the  presbytery  were 
contributing  more  than  before  to  missions,  and  would 
not  be  likely  to  add  this  project  until  the  people  did 
something  for  themselves.  They  requested  him  to 
draw  up  a  subscription  paper.  About  thirty  were  pres 
ent,  day  laborers  and  servant  girls  almost  exclusively; 
and  scarcely  one  subscribed  less  than  twenty  to  twenty- 
five  dollars,  or  several  hundred  dollars  in  all.  This 
again  aroused  Dr.  McEwan,  who  soon  added  to  the 
amount.  Some  lots  were  purchased  in  Coraopolis,  but 
in  1908  a  building  formerly  used  as  a  sanatorium  became 
available  for  the  Training  School.  This  was  purchased 
and  used  for  some  time  for  church  services,  and  also  as 
a  school.  The  first  payment  for  this  property  was 
accomplished  through  the  sale  of  the  lots,  which  had 
been  a  result  of  the  prayer  meeting  and  the  Slav  sub 
scriptions.  At  a  later  time,  the  presbytery  built  a  fine 
church  at  another  corner  of  the  lot,  and  secured  next 
to  it  a  residence  for  Dr.  Losa. 

One  great  evangelical  purpose  has  been  clearly 
marked  from  the  beginning  in  this  work  among  for 
eigners.  That  purpose,  as  stated  very  simply  by  Dr. 
Losa,  is  "to  bring  people  to  Christ."  This  purpose 
dominates  the  details  of  every  department  or  phase  of 
work.  In  a  sewing  class  the  sewing  lesson  is  preceded  by 
devotional  exercises,  and  the  Scripture  has  more 
emphasis  than  the  other  instruction.  In  1920,  Rev. 
Frank  Svacha  acted  as  a  field  secretary,  and  his  reports 
show  this  same  spirit.  His  use  of  the  stereopticon  was 
admirable;  but  whether  it  was  used  to  illustrate  Christ's 
"Last  Week"  or  the  life  of  Washington,  the  gospel  was 


in  evidence.  His  report  on  "The  Devotional  Spirit  of 
Our  Vacation  Bible  Schools"  says:  "At  the  very 
beginning  of  our  devotional  service  there  must  be  an 
atmosphere  of  worship.  Let  us  realize  that  it  is  the 
quiet  hour  with  God,  that  shall  be  the  very  best  founda 
tion  for  the  morning  session  of  our  school.  If  that  is 
attained,  then  under  its  influence  the  work  that  follows 
becomes  a  pleasure.  The  sweet  influence  of  the  Spirit 
of  God  dwells  in  the  soul  and  gives  both  the  teacher 
and  pupil  the  patience,  perseverance,  and  faithfulness 
that  are  so  much  needed  to  make  the  work  successful." 
The  pages  that  recount  his  numerous  visits  among  the 
missions,  ascertaining  their  condition  and  progress, 
are  incidental  proof  that  the  only  Americanization  that 
is  worthy  of  such  a  name  is  Christian  Americanization. 
The  program  and  exhibit  planned  by  the  superin 
tendents,  Drs.  Montgomery  and  Losa,  for  the  session 
of  Pittsburgh  Presbytery  in  November,  1920,  seemed 
like  a  climax  for  their  twenty  years  of  evangelical  work 
among  Slavs.  It  was  held,  only  a  few  weeks  before 
Dr.  Montgomery's  death,  in  the  main  auditorium  of  the 
First  Presbyterian  Church,  Pittsburgh,  Pennsylvania, 
and  in  the  adjoining  room  there  were  interesting  photo 
graphs  with  legends  as  to  phases  of  the  work,  also  a 
display  of  Scriptures  and  Christian  literature  in  the 
languages  used  by  the  colporteurs  and  an  exhibit  of 
needlework.  The  program  lasted  about  two  hours, 
was  instructive,  convincing,  and  had  much  variety, 
There  were  recitations  by  children  from  the  missions, 
speeches  by  missionaries  of  different  nationalities, 
music  in  chorus  by  pupils  of  the  Training  School  at 
Coraopolis,  and  singing  in  English,  though  some  of 
the  participants  had  arrived  in  this  country  from 
Czechoslovakia  only  a  few  weeks  before.  One  hymn 
was  sung  by  the  throng  of  workers  in  ten  languages. 
The  superintendents  made  addresses.  Dr.  Mont- 


gomery's  was  not  committed  to  writing  and  therefore 
cannot  be  reproduced.  From  Dr.  Losa's  notes  we 
have  the  following: 

"Twenty  years  ago  Pittsburgh  Presbytery  decided 
to  try  an  experiment.  Among  a  hundred  thousand 
foreigners  they  had  two  little  missions,  Italian  and 
French.  They  then  called  from  the  West  a  man  who 
was  inexperienced  in  the  many-sided  problem  of 
beliefs,  languages,  and  customs,  but  willing  and  devoted 
to  this  cause.  Difficulties  in  the  initial  stages  of  this 
work  were  such  that  it  is  a  wonder  that  it  did  not  die 
in  its  infancy.  And  the  credit  for  the  survival  of  this 
child  belongs  to  another  man  of  this  presbytery  who  in 
the  providence  of  God  was  its  most  gentle  nurse.  Of 
course,  you  know  that  I  refer  to  Dr.  William  L. 
McEwan,  who  will  always  be  lovingly  remembered  by 
the  first  little  groups  of  workers  of  twelve,  fifteen,  and 
twenty  years  ago."  Dr.  Losa  also  complimented  the 
committees,  "committees  that  cannot  be  matched  in 
the  United  States:  First,  the  Home  Missions  Com 
mittee  of  the  Presbytery  of  Pittsburgh;  second,  the 
Joint  Committee  of  Pittsburgh  and  Allegheny  Presby 
teries,  that  followed;  third,  the  trustees  of  Pittsburgh 
Presbytery,  who  have  for  their  executive  officer  a 
man  (Dr.  Montgomery)  who  has  not  only  a  rare 
knowledge  of  the  field,  and  wisdom  and  tact  in  using 
this  knowledge,  but  also  a  genuine  love  toward  these 
immense  masses  of  future  United  States  citizens,  and 
toward  the  workers.  And  here  lies  the  secret  of  the 
success — and  all  the  rest  of  the  credit  for  any  success 
in  this  work  belongs  to  these  faithful  and  untiring 
workers  of  many  nationalities  that  stand  before  you 
to-day,  and  the  converts  that  do  not  stand  before  you. 
.  .  .  You  must  read  between  the  lines  to  comprehend 
fully  what  has  been  done.  That  some  fifteen  hundred 
actual  members  were  received,  twenty  ministers 


ordained,  twenty  girls  became  missionaries,  fifteen  men 
became  colporteurs,  thousands  of  children  were  gath 
ered  in  Sabbath  schools — those  figures  will  give  you 
only  an  incomplete  idea  of  the  whole  work.  Also,  the 
thirty  thousand  dollars'  worth  of  Bibles,  New  Testa 
ments,  and  religious  books  sold,  and  millions  of  pages 
of  tracts  distributed,  will  not  tell  you  the  full  story  of 
your  colporteur's  wrork.  You  would  have  to  read 
between  the  lines  about  thousands  of  souls  who  were 
influenced  by  your  missionaries  and  missions,  about 
hundreds  of  converts  who  exerted  a  wholesome  influence 
in  their  native  countries,  and  some  who  started  congre 
gations  in  Italy,  Jugoslavia,  and  other  places,  to 
appreciate  the  work.  .  .  .  You  would  have  to  follow 
your  missionaries  from  door  to  door  and  live  through 
the  experience  of  having  the  doors  slammed  in  your 
face,  of  being  ejected  from  some  houses,  of  having 
promises  to  come  to  the  meeting  or  to  send  the  children 
to  the  Sabbath  school,  ninety -five  per  cent  of  which 
are  never  fulfilled,  to  appreciate  the  heroic  spirit  of 
your  workers. 

"And  you  would  have  to  enter  the  closed  rooms  of 
your  missionaries  and  see  their  tears,  the  pessimism  that 
slyly  but  persistently  enters  their  hearts,  and  would 
surely  destroy  their  usefulness  and  chase  them  away 
from  their  work  if  it  were  not  for  the  new  strength,  new 
enthusiasm,  that  fills  their  hearts  again  after  a  fervent 
prayer  that  is  poured  out  often  in  agony.  You  would 
have  to  meet  some  of  the  converts  and  hear  the  story 
from  their  own  lips  to  realize  fully  that  this  kind  of 
work  done  in  this  way  and  by  these  men  and  women, 
foreign-born  or  of  foreign  parentage,  is  the  only  kind 
that  lays  the  right  foundation  for  pure  and  true 
Americanism;  and  you  would  realize  also  the  folly  of 
the  other  kind  of  work  that  is  so  much  emphasized 
to-day,  and  that  goes  only  halfway,  and  the  minor  half 


at  that — just  to  the  mind  and  head,  but  not  to  the  heart 
and  spirit.  These  exhibits  will  prove  to  you  that  we 
go  the  whole  way  and  that  the  final  goal  is  never  lost 
sight  of." 

Then  he  discussed  their  periodical  literature,  and  if 
the  life  of  the  American  people  is  to  be  gauged  by  what 
they  read,  especially  on  Sunday,  "what  shall  we  say 
of  the  foreigners  who  have  no  religious  papers,  and 
whose  secular  papers  are  far  below  those  of  Americans 
in  spiritual  respects,  papers  that  write  only  sneeringly 
of  religion  and  faith  in  Christ?  Brethren,  the  letters 
that  come  to  the  editors  of  the  papers  published  by  the 
Board  of  Publication  and  Sabbath  School  Work  under 
your  supervision  would  convince  you  that  these  papers 
that  are  weekly  visitors  to  thousands  of  foreign  families 
are  bringing  untold  blessings  to  them,  and  save  many 
of  them,  hundreds  of  individuals,  from  infidelity. 

"Do  we  make  and  have  wre  made  any  mistakes? 
The  speaker  confesses  that  he  learned  more  from  his 
mistakes  than  from  his  professors  and  books.  Each 
mistake,  rightly  viewed,  was  a  great  asset  to  him  for 
future  work." 

Finally  he  appealed  for  the  workers,  that  the  brethren 
would  be  patient  with  them,  encourage  them,  and  not 
let  them  suffer  financially.  The  presbytery  always 
has  taken  good  care  of  them;  yet  none  must  suppose 
that  any  of  them  are  living  in  luxury! 

It  was  a  pleasure  to  Dr.  Montgomery  to  read  a  number 
of  letters  testifying  to  appreciation  of  this  exhibit.  One 
of  these  was  from  Dr.  Isaac  Boyce,  as  follows,  dated, 
from  Allison  Park,  Pennsylvania,  November  26,  1920: 

"It  was  my  privilege  to  be  present  in  the  meeting  of 
the  Presbytery  of  Pittsburgh  on  November  9,  and  to 
note  and  study  carefully  the  exhibit  of  the  foreign- 
mission  work  under  your  superin tendency;  and  I  feel 
that  it  is  but  just  to  give  you  my  personal  appreciation 


of  the  work  being  carried  forward  in  the  region  of 
Pittsburgh  among  the  foreign  population  residing  in  it. 

"I  was,  as  you  are  aware,  for  twenty-seven  years  a 
missionary  of  our  Foreign  Board  in  Mexico.  I  am  not, 
therefore,  a  stranger  to  mission  problems,  and  am  able 
to  appreciate  the  difficulties  met  with  in  carrying  on 
such  a  work.  ...  It  is,  therefore,  a  very  great 
pleasure  to  me  to  express  to  you  my  approval  of  your 
work,  and  to  congratulate  you  on  the  fine  results  so 
far  obtained  in  it. 

"Your  organization  meets  with  my  most  hearty 
approval.  Mission  work  is,  after  all,  the  same  the 
world  over.  It  was  my  privilege  to  have  a  considerable 
part  in  the  organizing  and  developing  of  our  work  in 
Mexico,  as  well  as  to  study  mission  organization  in  all 
our  world-wide  work.  It  was  rather  surprising,  as  I 
studied  your  methods  and  your  organization,  to  note 
how  closely  you  have  followed  the  general  plan  of 
work  obtaining  in  the  whole  foreign-mission  work  of 
the  Church,  and  I  am  enough  of  a  Presbyterian  to 
believe  that  our  system  is  not  excelled  by  the  plans  and 
methods  of  any  Church.  I  note: 

"First.  That  while  you  recognize  the  absolute 
necessity  of  money  for  carrying  on  your  work,  you  yet 
seem  to  appreciate  that  money  is  not  by  any  means 
the  most  important  factor  entering  into  it;  and  that  it 
has  to  be  constantly  watched  lest  it  become  a  danger 
to  the  largest  measure  of  success  possible  in  such  a  work. 

"Second.  You  evidently  recognize  that  the  foreign 
worker,  whether  lay  or  minister,  is  the  factor  which 
must,  in  the  long  run,  insure  success  or  result  in  failure. 
There  is  always  the  danger  of  giving  undue  importance 
to  the  Americans  who  direct  the  work.  Missionaries 
the  world  over  have  come  to  recognize  the  danger 
resulting  from  giving  undue  importance  and  promi 
nence  to  the  American  missionary,  and  looking  on  the 


foreign  worker  as  of  rather  smaller  importance.  In  the 
beginning  of  such  a  work  the  American  looms  large; 
but  in  the  development  and  permanent  organization 
and  growth  of  such  an  enterprise  the  native  worker, 
whether  he  works  in  the  U.  S.  A.  or  in  a  foreign  coun 
try,  must  take  the  prominent  place,  and  gradually  come 
to  control  and  direct  in  large  part  the  work.  The 
American  worker  must  decrease  and  the  native  increase. 
And  I  was  happy  to  note  in  your  exhibit  that  you 
appreciate  this  fact. 

"Third.  The  importance  you  are  giving  to  the 
training  of  foreign  workers  meets  with  my  most  hearty 
approval.  You  are  wise  in  giving  such  large  place  in 
your  work  to  the  school  in  Coraopolis.  Without  an 
educated  native  constituency  on  which,  in  ever- 
increasing  ratio,  the  responsibility  can  be  laid,  the 
fullest  measure  of  success  cannot  be  realized,  or  even 
hoped  for.  I  am  convinced  that  the  foreign  nations  in 
which  evangelical  work  is  being  prosecuted  will  never 
be  evangelized  save  by  well-equipped  native  evangelists 
and  pastors  and  teachers;  and  my  conviction  rests  on 
long  experience,  and,  as  well,  on  some  failure  in  my 
earlier  mission  experience  to  appreciate  the  importance 
attaching  to  the  native  worker  and  to  his  fullest 
equipment  for  his  work. 

"In  closing,  let  me  say  that  I  watched  very  closely 
for  any  seeming  tendency  to  patronize  the  native 
worker  and  the  native  church.  On  no  single  particular, 
perhaps,  do  so  many  missionaries  make  shipwreck  as 
on  this  not  altogether  unnatural  tendency.  We  believe 
that  our  institutions  and  our  methods  are  the  best,  but 
too  marked  a  tendency  to  make  our  feeling  promi 
nent  is  galling  to  the  native  worker  and  kills  his 
initiative,  or  at  least  chills  it  very  decidedly  and  makes 
it  impossible  for  him  to  put  his  very  best  into  his  work. 
It  was,  as  it  always  has  been,  grateful  to  me  to  note 


the  cordial  relations  existing  between  Dr.  Losa,  and 
other  prominent  workers,  and  yourself.  You,  very 
wisely,  push  them  to  the  front,  and  apparently  strive 
to  impress  on  them  that  the  work  in  hand  is  primarily 
their  work,  and  that  its  success  depends  principally 
on  them. 

"Let  me  say  that  I  most  heartily  enjoyed  your  exhibit 
in  the  recent  meeting  of  presbytery.  It  brought  back 
to  me  old  memories  which  are  very  precious  to  me,  and 
which  I  would  not  exchange  for  anything  I  can  think  of. 
It  was  just  the  repetition  of  things  I  had  been  through 
many,  many  times,  and  awakened  in  me  a  desire  to 
be  once  more  in  a  work  to  which  I  gave  so  many  years; 
and  which  to  my  mind  is  the  greatest  enterprise  which 
can  engage  the  soul,  and  stimulate  the  very  best  that  is 
in  the  soul,  the  spirit  of  the  man  or  woman  who  loves 
the  Lord  Jesus,  and  prays  intelligently  for  the  coming 
of  his  Kingdom." 

A  report  was  prepared  for  the  presbytery's  exhibit 
from  which  we  have  the  following: 

"We  have  in  Coraopolis  a  three-story  frame  building 
containing  thirty-two  rooms  altogether.  We  can  house 
twenty -two  pupils  comfortably.  There  are,  living  with 
the  pupils,  a  matron  and  two  teachers.  ...  So  far, 
seventy-one  girls  have  graduated.  There  are  seventeen 
in  the  school  at  the  present  time.  Four  of  them  will 
graduate  next  spring  (two  Slovak,  two  Bohemian). 
.  .  .  The  rest  of  the  girls,  thirteen,  came  from  Bohemia, 
every  one  of  them  a  high-school  graduate.  Two  of 
them  are  daughters  of  Presbyterian  ministers.  .  .  . 
We  have  been  favored  in  having  exceptionally  capable 
and  spiritual  girls  as  our  missionaries.  ...  At  one 
time  we  had  eighteen  missionaries  at  work.  This 
number  has  been  curtailed  on  account  of  lack  of  workers. 

"Almost  from  the  beginning  of  the  foreign  work 
under  the  general  supervision  of  Dr.  Losa,  until  now, 

P.   W.    SNYDER,   D.D. 


the  women,  first  by  a  joint  committee  from  the  presby 
teries  of  Allegheny  and  Pittsburgh,  and  after  the 
union  of  the  two  presbyteries,  by  the  Woman's  Presby 
terian  Home  Mission  Society,  have  cooperated  with 
the  men  in  the  work.  Their  efforts  have  been  confined 
very  largely  to  the  educational  department  in  connec 
tion  with  the  Training  School  located  at  Coraopolis, 
and  to  the  support  of  certain  women  missionaries  in 
specified  fields  of  foreign  work.  .  .  .  This  cooperative 
work  on  the  part  of  the  Woman's  Home  Mission 
Society  has  been  most  harmonious  and  helpful,  so 
much  so  that  the  monetary  support  of  the  work  now 
amounts  to  more  than  ten  thousand  dollars  a  year. 
Too  great  credit  cannot  be  given  to  the  consecrated 
women  who  have  so  loyally  supported  this  work." 
The  report  gives  details  as  to  organization  and  work  of 
the  "Joint  Committee  on  Education"  of  the  trustees 
and  the  Woman's  Society. 

In  April,  1921,  the  Presbytery  of  Pittsburgh  ap 
pointed  Dr.  -P.  W.  Snyder  as  its  new  Superintendent 
of  Missions.  Dr.  S.  J.  Fisher,  who  has  had  long  experi 
ence  in  the  presbytery,  a  popular  writer  for  our  Church 
newspapers,  and  the  recording  secretary  for  the 
American  Hussite  Society,  has  kindly  furnished  the 
following  statement,  dated  at  Pittsburgh,  Pennsylvania, 
July  23,  1921: 

"In  regard  to  your  inquiry  concerning  the  action  of 
the  Presbytery  of  Pittsburgh,  in  electing  a  successor 
to  the  late  Dr.  George  W.  Montgomery,  as  Superin 
tendent  of  Presbyterian  Missions,  I  can  heartily  say 
that  the  presbytery  feels  it  has  made  a  wise  choice  in 
electing  Dr.  P.  W.  Snyder  as  superintendent.  This 
mission  work  has  been  a  constantly  enlarging  and 
increasingly  important  work.  In  diversity  of  operation, 
in  the  variety  of  its  workers,  and  need  of  larger  financing, 
it  has  grown  remarkably  through  the  years.  A  proper 


supervision  calls  for  considerable  ministerial  experience, 
acquaintance  with  this  region  and  its  race  problems, 
as  well  as  a  strong  faith  and  appreciation  of  the  need 
of  the  guidance  of  God.  The  presbytery  feels  that  in 
Dr.  Snyder  it  has  found  one  who  by  training  and  quali 
ties  of  mind  and  heart  is  well  fitted  to  discharge  the 
duties  of  this  important  office.  His  experience  as  a 
pastor  on  the  South  Side,  and  great  success  at  Home- 
wood,  his  years  of  relationship  to  the  problems  of 
Church  comity  and  survey  of  the  responsibility  of  each 
denomination  in  this  city,  have  prepared  him  for  an 
intelligent  study  and  supervision  of  this  work  in  this 
region.  His  acquaintance  with  the  problems  of  the 
weaker  church,  and  his  sympathy  with  such  enter 
prises  and  fields,  gives  the  presbytery  every  reason  to 
believe  his  plans,  suggestions,  and  purposes  shall  give 
those  missions  an  added  value,  and  a  still  greater  suc 
cess.  As  a  man  of  experience,  open-minded,  and  yet 
able  to  resist  unwise  or  hasty  experiments,  he  can  be 
relied  upon." 


Chapter  IV 


REV.  FRANCIS  PRUDKY,  pastor  at  Olomouc,  Moravia, 
was  sent  by  the  Church  Missionary  Society,  an  organiza 
tion  which  renders  assistance  to  churches  beyond  the 
bounds  of  Czechoslovakia,  to  investigate  a  number  of 
Bohemian  colonies;  his  journeys  throw  light  upon  the 
possibilities  of  evangelizing  various  regions,  populous 
or  important,  between  the  Baltic  and  the  Black  seas, 
through  the  work  of  evangelical  Czechoslovaks. 

This  story  follows  closely  the  recital  given  to  the 
writer  by  Mr.  Prudky  during  his  visits  to  Pittsburgh 
in  the  latter  months  of  1920.  Occasionally  he  observed 
differences  in  soils,  occupations,  or  as  to  whether  the 
people  owned  or  rented  their  ground;  for  such  details 
affect  Church  life  in  Europe  as  in  America.  Especially 
important  is  the  difference  of  situation  for  the  Bohemian 
colonies  in  regions  dominated  by  Poles,  or  those  in 
Russian  districts;  for  convenience  no  distinction  of 
Ukrainians  as  different  from  Russians  will  here  be 
noted.  In  Poland  he  visited  four  centers  of  Bohemian 
Reformed  churches,  the  largest  church  being  at  Zelov, 
and  the  largest  city  being  Lodz.  He  journeyed  farther 
among  localities  in  two  of  the  Russian  "Governments," 
those  of  Volhynia  and  of  Kherson. 

His  first  journey,  in  1908,  was  through  Russian 
Poland.  A  verst  is  .66  of  a  mile,  or  1.06  kilometers; 
and  some  thirty  versts  from  the  notorious  monastery 
of  Czenstochov,  where  robberies  and  misdemeanors 
disgusted  many  in  Russia,  is  Kucov,  a  village  wholly 
Bohemian,  of  sixty  or  seventy  families,  with  other 
families  in  neighboring  villages.  They  had  a  good 



church  building,  destroyed  by  artillery  in  the  second 
year  of  the  War,  but  now  rebuilt.  They  have  also  a 
parochial  school  and  a  schoolmaster.  Their  homes  are 
neat,  contrasting  with  Polish  villages.  They  burn  peat 
for  fuel.  The  women  have  an  elaborate  linen  head 
dress  worn  only  on  Sundays.  The  people  are  religious, 
loving  the  gospel.  Though  it  was  a  week  day,  all  left 
their  work  and  came  to  church,  where  Mr.  Prudky 
preached  twice.  The  Russian  Government  made  so 
many  difficulties  for  pastors  or  others  in  securing 
passports  that  though  they  were  not  far  from  Moravia, 
they  had  little  communication  with  it,  and  they  had 
many  questions  to  ask. 

Some  twenty-seven  miles  beyond  this  place  is  Zelov, 
near  Lask,  which  is  the  nearest  station  to  Lodz.  The 
Laski  family  of  the  nobility  was  famous  in  Poland, 
and  from  it  came  John  Laski,  the  great  Reformer  of 
Poland,  a  friend  of  Calvin.  Zelov,  with  5000  inhab 
itants,  is  the  largest  Bohemian  colony  of  Poland. 
Some  2500  are  Bohemians,  2000  Jews,  the  rest  Poles 
or  Germans.  The  Bohemians  came  from  German 
Poland  in  1815,  purchasing  a  portion  of  territory  from  a 
Polish  nobleman,  the  deed  of  which  Mr.  Prudky 
examined.  The  soil  is  sandy,  not  rich,  and  the  impor 
tant  occupation  is  weaving  cloth  for  the  Lodz  factories. 
The  Czar  Alexander  I  helped  them  to  build  a  fine 
Reformed  church,  and  they  also  have  their  parochial 
school.  At  first  all  were  Reformed  adherents,  but  some 
twenty  years  ago,  Baptists  and,  later,  Congregation- 
alists  undertook  missions  there.  The  people  are  great 
Bible  readers,  and  some  time  ago  declined  to  take 
religious  newspapers,  saying  the  Bible  was  sufficient, 
for  it  was  to  them  a  spelling  book,  reader,  geography, 
history,  and  their  poetical  literature.  They  speak  the 
same  fine  dialect  of  Bohemian  that  is  preserved  in  the 
Kralicka  Bohemian  Bible.  In  the  forenoon  of  Sunday 


Mr.  Prudky  found  their  church  full,  a  larger  audience 
than  the  Reformed  could  then  assemble  in  Bohemia  or 
Moravia,  for  their  congregation  numbers  five  thousand 
souls.  Before  the  War,  it  was  the  largest  Reformed 
Bohemian  congregation  in  the  world.  Connected  with 
Zelov  as  headquarters,  are  some  villages.  In  one  of 
these  the  rent  of  the  forest  sustains  their  school.  The 
schoolmaster,  with  a  family  of  ten  children,  has  a  home 
of  two  rooms  containing  the  kitchen  and  living  room, 
and  while  there  is  only  one  knife  for  the  entire  company 
at  table,  each  has  a  spoon ! 

This  tour  then  leads  to  Lodz,  next  to  Warsaw,  the 
largest  town  in  Poland,  growing  rapidly  before  the 
War,  with  several  hundred  thousand  inhabitants,  a 
town  of  cloth  factories.  The  Reformed  churches  have 
a  thousand  souls,  originally  from  Zelov,  and  a  fine 
school.  Mr.  Prudky  was  there  at  the  time  of  the 
revolution.  Cossack  soldiers  escorted  through  the 
streets  a  carriage  with  mails  and  letters  which  they 
had  captured.  Soldiers  w^ere  in  the  cars,  scrutinizing 
passports  closely.  Mr.  Prudky 's  impression  of  the 
people  there,  in  the  meetings  which  he  held,  was  that 
they  also  were  lovers  of  the  Bible  and  devout.  At 
that  time  they  depended  for  pastoral  care  upon  the 
pastor  in  Warsaw,  a  Bohemian,  Rev.  Mr.  Jelen,  whose 
death  some  time  afterward  was  much  lamented.  A 
cantor  or  teacher  conducted  their  pulpit  services,  as 
Mr.  Jelen  could  come  only  at  intervals  of  some  months. 
Congregationalists  also  hold  services  in  Lodz.  Lodz 
was  originally  German,  and  the  eight  or  ten  Lutheran 
churches  there  at  first  used  the  German  language. 
Now  they  all  use  the  Polish  language.  It  is  singular 
that  German  statesmen  failed  so  signally  to  Germanize 
Posen's  Poles,  while  these  Germans  of  Russian  Poland 
have  been  Polonized.  Y 

The  last  community  visited  in  Poland  was  Zyrardow, 


between  Lodz  and  Warsaw.  Here  are  almost  ten  thou 
sand  people,  whose  homes,  factories,  churches,  the 
cemetery  with  its  sections,  the  entire  place,  all  belongs 
to  one  German  mill  owner.  He  built  and  owns  the 
Bohemian  Reformed  Church,  as  he  does  all  the  others 
in  the  town.  It  is  a  town  of  cloth  factories.  The 
Reformed  number  some  six  hundred  souls,  supplied  by 
a  cantor,  with  occasional  visits  from  the  pastor  in 
Warsaw,  Mr.  Jelen,  who  was  at  that  time  superin 
tendent  of  the  synod.  On  the  occasion  of  Mr.  Prudky's 
visit,  the  town  was  full  of  soldiers  who  were  keeping 
order  during  a  strike. 

There  was  no  Bohemian  Reformed  Church  in  Wrar- 
saw,  the  capital  of  Poland,  but  a  fine  Gothic  Reformed 
Church  there.  The  superintendent  of  the  synod, 
Rev.  Semadeni,  and  the  pastor  of  this  Church,  Rev. 
Skierski,  were  both  ardently  patriotic  Poles.  The  four 
centers  above  mentioned  are  all  that  the  Bohemian 
Reformed  Church  has  in  Poland;  and  all  these  are 
descendants  from  emigrants  who  left  Bohemia  after 
the  disastrous  battle  of  the  White  Mountain. 

It  was  a  rare  scene  that  occurred  at  the  time  when 
Mr.  Prudky  was  present  in  the  Synod  of  Vilna.  There 
he  was,  a  Bohemian  Reformed  leader,  listening  to  dis 
cussions  of  Polish  Reformed  leaders,  both  ministers 
and  laymen,  the  presiding  officer  being  a  Polish  noble 
man.  He  conferred  with  them  as  to  the  difficulties  of 
Bohemian  Reformed  churches  in  their  Polish  districts. 
In  his  tours  he  also  made  the  acquaintance  of  Polish 
evangelical  leaders  in  their  Synod  of  Warsaw.  It  is 
doubtful  whether  any  other  representatives  of  the 
Polish  and  Bohemian  peoples  could  be  found  who 
could  hold  conferences  in  so  Christian  and  fraternal  a 
manner  as  such  evangelical  men.  The  chariot  of  the 
gospel  might  speed  victoriously  among  Slav  peoples, 
when  their  watchmen  see  thus  eye  to  eye. 


As  he  passed  on  into  Russian  regions,  in  the  two 
Governments  of  Volhynia  and  Kherson,  holding  meet 
ings,  he  learned  the  conditions  of  the  people,  their 
difficulties,  their  needs.  Details,  some  of  which  are 
recited  elsewhere,  show  the  attitude  of  the  Russian 
authorities  of  that  period  toward  these  Reformed 
churches.  The  primitive  houses  built  by  Slav  farmers, 
in  some  places  with  walls  of  earth  and  straw,  can  also 
be  found  in  America.  Very  different  conditions  obtain 
in  German  Silesia,  now  a  part  of  Poland,  where  the 
Bohemians  of  the  younger  generation  have  to  some 
extent  been  Germanized.  A  singular  contrast  is  that 
many  German  Lutherans  in  Poland  have  been  Polon- 
ized.  A  still  different  situation  appeared  in  districts 
now  belonging  to  Jugoslavia,  the  territories  of  Croatia 
and  Slavonia.  In  reports  of  such  tours,  to  find  churches 
in  a  low  state,  pastorless  for  years,  hampered  by 
unfriendly  officials  and  oppressive  governments,  should 
not  abate  Christian  hope  and  zeal.  "The  king's  heart 
is  in  the  hand  of  the  Lord."  And  the  Lord  of  the 
harvest  hears  the  prayer  that  he  himself  has  inspired, 
and  raises  up  the  laborers  that  are  needed.  All  these 
moral  wastes  can  be  transformed  into  spiritual  flocks 
of  men.  And  when  devout  households  are  found,  far 
from  churches,  who  instruct  their  children  in  the  Bible 
and  catechism  and  eagerly  profit  by  a  minister's  visit, 
this  should  have  a  place  in  the  same  narrative  which 
describes  centers  with  their  hundreds  or  their  thou 
sands  of  Church  members.  Moreover,  to  see  a  convert 
from  America  whose  life  was  transformed  from  being 
brutal  and  drunken  become  a  kind  Christian  husband, 
an  earnest  reader  of  the  Bible,  who  helped  to  gather 
scattered  families  into  a  congregation  and  was  serving 
as  a  church  treasurer  when  Mr.  Prudky  found  him,  is 
good  news  from  a  far  country,  as  cold  water  to  a  thirsty 


Since  the  Reformation  no  Slav  land  has  afforded 
such  encouragement  for  evangelical  work  as  Czecho 
slovakia,  after  the  armistice  was  signed.  Thereupon, 
losing  no  time,  Bohemian  Reformed  and  Lutheran 
Churches,  whose  separation  had  been  an  arbitrary 
enforcement  of  outsiders,  united  as  the  "Evangelical 
Church  of  Czech  Brethren,"  with  a  constituency  o\ 
about  two  hundred  thousand;  and  they  cultivate  close 
acquaintance  with  about  five  hundred  thousand  Slovak 
evangelicals.  Beholding  many  open  doors,  they  ar( 
"like  them  that  dream."  A  rapid  survey  of  the  region 
where  Mr.  Prudky  labors,  in  North  Moravia,  writh 
Olomouc  as  headquarters,  is  demonstrative  for  all  oi 

Moravska  Ostrava  has  been  growing  like  a  lesser 
Pittsburgh  into  an  important  manufacturing  center. 
For  some  time  in  1904  Mr.  Prudky  visited  the  place 
once  in  two  months,  gathering  a  small  company  of 
worshipers.  An  evangelical  church  is  there,  made  up 
of  Germans  and  of  Polish  Lutherans.  These  Poles, 
however,  differ  somewhat  in  dialect  and  disposition 
from  other  Poles,  preferring  to  be  classed  as  "Mora 
vians,"  and  they  readily  send  their  children  to  Bohemian 
schools.  In  1920  the  Bohemian  Reformed  congrega 
tion,  which  had  increased  to  nearly  three  hundred 
souls,  was  augmented  to  three  thousand  souls,  by  the 
union  of  Bohemian  Lutheran  and  Reformed  congrega 
tions.  Germans  naturally  stood  aloof  from  such  a 
union;  and  the  Poles  had  no  more  control  in  the  church 
which  had  been  erected  partly  by  their  contributions. 
To  use  that  church  for  their  services,  this  congregation 
must  pay  a  goodly  rent.  The  Poles  having  no  Bohemian 
traditions,  being  in  a  transition  state,  scarcely  know 
where  they  are  ecclesiastically;  and  it  is  an  urgen! 
problem  to  interest  them  in  the  erection  of  another 
building,  when  the  building  that  they  formerly  had 



seemed  to  be  the  last  contribution  they  needed  to  make. 
They  are  mostly  miners,  and  the  community  is  the 
most  important  field  for  development  now  in  Czecho 

The  surroundings  of  Olomouc  make  a  territory  of 
about  4000  square  miles  with  half  a  million  people. 
It  is  a  district  that  contains  some  of  the  best  soil  in 
Moravia.  Pferov,  since  Mr.  Prudky's  visit  to  America, 
has  become  a  separate  charge,  since  Rev.  C.  A.  Chval, 
of  Pittsburgh  Presbytery,  toward  the  close  of  1920 
went  there  as  pastor,  his  support  being  assured  through 
funds  raised  by  Drs.  Montgomery  and  Losa.  It  is 
headquarters  for  several  other  communities.  A  neat 
church  building  was  erected  here  in  1908.  It  is  a 
historical  place,  the  birthplace  of  Blahoslav,  who  died  in 
1571.  His  excellent  translation  of  the  New  Testament 
from  the  Greek  was  afterwards,  with  minor  revision,  in 
corporated  into  the  Kralicka  Bible,  and  he  wras  the  author 
of  many  hymns  and  religious  works.  Here,  too,  is  still 
shown  the  Gymnasium  where  for  four  years,  1614-1618, 
Comenius  was  the  principal.  A  Bohemian  Reformed 
statesman  of  that  locality,  Karel  ze  Zerotina,  went  into 
voluntary  exile  after  1620,  but  was  allowed  to  revisit 
his  estates,  and  died  during  such  a  visit.  In  a  neigh 
boring  village,  Hranice,  a  former  chapel  of  the  Bohe 
mian  Brethren  still  exists,  now  used  as  a  warehouse. 

Another  important  locality,  which  should  be  a 
separate  charge,  is  Prostejov,  where  there  are  many 
workmen.  It  has  had  services  on  alternate  Sunday 
afternoons,  with  no  church  building,  in  a  place  of 
worship  available  only  on  Sundays.  Mr.  Prudky's 
assistant  minister,  Rev.  Sedy,  had  his  headquarters 
in  Svebohov,  afterwards  changed  to  Hrabova,  and  the 
story  of  its  origin  as  told  by  a  Bohemian  coworker  in 
Germany  so  interested  the  hearers  that  a  society  was 
formed  to  provide  the  salary  for  the  worker  there. 


Since  the  War,  this  support  has  been  withdrawn,  and 
the  support  must  be  furnished  by  Bohemians.  A 
century  ago,  a  Bohemian  Catholic  attended  a  church 
festival  in  Prague  and  obtained  a  Bible.  He  gathered 
his  friends,  and  the  reading  of  this  Bible  together  led 
to  the  creation  of  the  Reformed  Church  at  Svebohov 
Intolerable  persecutions  hindered  them.  It  was  found 
that  they  did  not  have  the  certificates,  always  required, 
that  they  had  been  to  the  confessional.  "Our  certifi 
cates,"  they  said,  "are  our  consciences."  To  be  recog 
nized  as  Protestants,  they  must  affirm  their  purpose  to 
become  such  in  "examinations,"  for  six  weeks.  By  a 
subterfuge  the  hours  in  a  period  of  six  weeks  were 
counted,  and  this  ingenious  inquisition  extended  for  a 
year  or  more,  with  every  other  annoyance  added  that 
could  be  invented.  Yet  by  1850  this  Reformed  group 
numbered  seventy  souls.  They  were  allowed  to  retain 
their  own  cemetery,  and  to  build  a  mausoleum,  and 
this  served  as  their  place  of  worship  until  more  tolera 
tion  was  granted.  The  assistant  holds  services  in 
Zabr*eh,  where  Jiri  Strejc  was  born,  a  writer  of  Bohemian 
metrical  psalms.  Zabreh  has  two  villages,  also  Mirov 
in  its  circuit,  where  there  is  a  state  prison  that  should 
be  regularly  visited.  Mr.  Prudky  visited  eight  places 
to  catechize  the  children,  his  assistant  visited  six  more, 
and  a  schoolmaster  cared  for  another  locality.  There 
are  also  devoted  women  workers  and  young  people 
who  help  in  Sunday  schools,  in  church  support,  and  in 
the  care  of  the  poor.  v 

In  Hrabova,  during  July,  1921,  Mr.  Sedy  wel 
comed  his  first  confirmation  class  of  twelve  children 
who  had  been  instructed  there,  and  on  the  same  occa 
sion  received  a  hundred  adults  as  Church  members. 
In  describing  the  work,  he  emphatically  declares  that 
our  Board  of  Publication,  by  its  picture  cards  and  its 
Bohemian  papers  for  children  and  for  adults,  has 


rendered  invaluable  service.  "I  do  not  know  what 
could  be  done  without  your  help;  not  half  of  what  has 
been  accomplished,"  he  writes  to  Dr.  Losa.  And  he 
mentions,  as  in  almost  every  letter,  a  service  in  a  new 
locality.  Another  pastor  made  a  tour  in  what  may  be 
called  "Moravian"  Slovakia,  where  the  dialect,  in  one 
Moravian  village  after  another,  increasingly  resembles 
the  Slovak.  Often  the  attendance  in  the  places  men 
tioned  was  two  hundred,  or  three  hundred,  with  in 
stances  of  five  hundred,  nine  hundred,  a  thousand, 
once  fifteen  hundred.  In  a  hall  where  this  instance 
occurred,  of  nine  hundred  present,  he  discoursed  for 
an  hour.  But  when  he  finished,  all  remained  seated, 
and  a  voice  requested,  "Please  continue."  But  he  was 
too  weary,  and  had  to  consider  the  care  of  his  voice,  in 
those  frequent  meetings;  yet  such  behavior  and  re 
quests  from  audiences  are  not  uncommon.  Formerly, 
Bohemians  would  discuss  anything  but  religion.  Now, 
the  news  is  reiterated,  that  in  trains  and  everywhere, 
groups  soon  form  that  plunge  into  religious  discussions, 
and  audiences  that  would  not  listen  to  discourses  on 
politics  or  socialism  will  crowd  any  auditorium  to  hear 
about  Huss  and  the  gospel.  The  pressure  increases, 
urging  Presbyterian  Bohemian  ministers  in  America, 
even  for  limited  periods,  to  return  to  Czechoslovakia; 
and  it  is  the  exception,  proving  the  rule,  that  when 
such  men  can  be  spared,  and  means  provided,  those 
who  are  already  qualified,  but  no  other  Americans, 
could  well  be  sent  to  relieve  the  emergency. 

Here,  then,  should  be  several  separate  charges  in 
Mr.  Prudky's  former  field.  He  dedicated  a  new  church 
building,  a  beautiful  structure,  in  July,  1920.  Soon 
after  he  made  his  tour  in  America.  When  he  returned 
home,  he  found  most  of  his  congregation  strangers  to 
him,  for  the  new  accessions,  largely  in  his  absence, 
a  total  of  over  three  hundred  for  that  year,  made  a 


new  situation.  Moreover,  in  the  opening  months  of 
1921,  he  welcomed  two  hundred  more,  so  that  his 
new  church  was  already  too  small.  His  assistant's 
congregation  grew  from  eighty  members  to  eight 
hundred;  and  Mr.  Chval,  arriving  in  January,  1921, 
soon  welcomed  two  hundred  members.  Moreover, 
Mr.  Prudky  had  visited  other  localities,  where  he 
had  lectured  on  John  Huss.  For  Bohemian  audi 
ences,  so  long  misled  by  blind  guides,  this  is  the  best, 
most  congenial  first  lesson  in  gospel  instruction.  If 
twenty  qualified  pastors  were  suddenly  to  appear,  he 
could  promptly  assemble  audiences  similar  to  those  he 
has  addressed,  in  strongly  Catholic  neighborhoods,  now 
friendly  to  the  gospel.  New  charges  can  be  formed  in 
the  same  way  as  those  now  being  cultivated.  In 
southern  Moravia  is  Uhersky  Brod,  one  of  the  reputed 
birthplaces  of  Comenius,  also  Uhersky  Hradiste,  with 
similar  needs  and  promise;  likewise,  in  southern 
Bohemia,  Budejovice  (Budweis).  Rev.  Krenek,  of 
the  Central  West  Presbytery,  Bohemian,  left  the 
United  States  for  an  evangelistic  tour  in  Czechoslovakia 
and  everywhere  was  greeted  by  great  audiences,  often 
in  the  open  air.  Somewhat  later,  Rev.  Dobias,  of 
the  Southwest  Bohemian  Presbytery  in  Texas,  made 
a  visit  of  nine  months  in  a  region  of  Czechoslovakia, 
of  western  Bohemia,  at  Domazlice,  where  a  Protestant 
was  a  rarity.  Two  hundred  members  he  found  there, 
but  when  he  returned  to  this  country  at  the  end  of  that 
visit,  he  had  increased  that  number  to  three  thousand ! 
In  one  week  delegations  from  fifteen  villages  of  the 
vicinity  visited  him,  asking  him  to  appoint  services  in 
their  towns. 

Another  Bohemian  minister,  in  the  fall  of  1920,  went 
from  America  to  that  land  to  engage  in  Y.  M.  C.  A.  work. 
He  wrote  that  on  March  6,  1921,  he  preached  in  Kralo- 
vice,  where  there  had  not  been  a  Protestant  previous 


to  January,  1921.  After  his  sermon  seventy-nine  new 
members  joined  the  newly  organized  Church.  There 
were  five  hundred  in  the  audience;  the  same  Sunday, 
he  preached  in  two  other  towns  under  similar  condi 
tions.  In  this  same  season,  it  was  reported  that  in 
Zizkov,  a  suburb  of  Prague,  5000  persons  had  united 
with  the  evangelical  Church.  Also,  in  Hrabova  there 
were  four  hundred  Protestants,  gaining  about  ten  new 
members  a  week,  where  a  year  before  there  were  prac 
tically  none.  At  the  meeting  of  the  Synod  of  the 
"Czech  Brethren"  in  February,  1921,  the  pastor  of  the 
Pilsen  Church  stated  that  in  and  around  Pilsen,  there 
were  some  13,000  accessions  to  his  Church,  enough 
for  ten  churches,  or  enough  to  make  a  new  seniorat, 
or  presbytery;  while  he  was  the  only  pastor  available 
for  them!  Three  times  on  Sunday  the  Pilsen  Church 
was  emptied  for  different  audiences.  So,  in  Brno  (Briinn)  , 
the  capital  of  Moravia,  two  services  were  held  in  its 
church  each  Sunday  morning,  for  the  multitude  had 
thus  to  be  accommodated;  and  like  arrangements  are 
spreading  elsewhere. 

These  details  may  suffice  to  indicate  a  movement 
unexampled  in  Europe  for  centuries.  The  Czechoslovak 
census  of  February,  1921,  adds  its  own  testimony.  The 
population  is  over  thirteen  million.  The  Evangelicals 
number  about  1,500,000;  "without  Confession,"  or 
churchless,  4,500,000.  Besides,  parallel  with  the  evan 
gelical  movement  is  one  of  the  "National"  Bohemian 
Church.  Some  142  priests  petitioned  for  mass  in  the 
vernacular,  the  circulation  of  the  Bible,  the  marriage 
of  priests  .  They  were  excommunicated  ;  called  *  'generals 
without  an  army."  The  Evangelicals  welcomed  them, 
believing  that  they  were  bound  for  an  evangelical  goal. 
And  this  census  indicates  that  their  adherents  are 
800,000!  For  Bohemia  and  Moravia,  where  Rome  had 
claimed  ninety-eight  per  cent,  it  seems  that  it  could 


retain  only  about  fifty  per  cent;  besides,  these  seces 
sions  from  its  ranks  continue. 

Dr.  Herben,  one  of  the  foremost  of  journalists, 
wrote  in  the  largest  paper  of  Czechoslovakia:  "Easter 
week  in  the  rural  districts  of  Bohemia  and  Moravia 
was  absolutely  a  religious  demonstration.  Whole 
towns  and  villages  were  looking  for  some  one  to  come 
and  teach  them  what  to  do.  Had  there  been  enough 
preachers  and  teachers  in  the  Evangelical  Church  of 
the  Czech  Brethren,  whole  districts  would  have  been 
celebrating  Easter  according  to  the  Protestant  rites, 
entirely  outside  of  the  Roman  Catholic  Church.  Such 
is  the  attitude  and  such  is  the  tendency  of  the  people.'* 

A  religious  paper  of  Bohemia  in  1921  stated  that  in  a 
year's  time  or  less  a  hundred  new  preaching  stations 
had  been  established  in  Bohemia  alone,  some  of  them 
already  surpassing  in  numbers  and  zeal  the  older,  self- 
supporting  churches;  and  that  every  Sunday  fifty 
ministers  and  laymen  are  endeavoring  to  supply  these 
points,  though  not  able  to  serve  half  the  localities  that 
call  for  the  gospel.  The  movement  has  been  mostly 
among  the  workingmen  and  the  middle  class;  but  is 
winning  its  way  also  among  intellectual,  cultured 

As  this  book  goes  to  press,  the  news  comes  that 
Rev.  Kenneth  D.  Miller,  Associate  Director  of  City 
and  Immigrant  Work  for  the  Presbyterian  Board  of 
Home  Missions,  New  York  City,  has  undertaken  a  tour 
of  investigation  in  Czechoslovakia  and  some  adjacent 
countries.  Some  years  ago  he  received  an  appointment 
to  one  of  the  fellowships  provided  by  the  Board,  en 
abling  him  to  spend  some  time  in  Bohemia,  where  he 
became  proficient  in  the  language.  His  service  later 
for  the  Board  was  varied  by  work  for  the  Y.  M.  C.  A. 
among  Czechoslovak  troops  in  Siberia.  He  can  readily 
get  the  viewpoint  of  Czechoslovak  leaders.  Arrange- 


ments  are  progressing  also  to  send  two  or  more  Bohe 
mian  ministers  from  America  to  Czechoslovakia.  Dr. 
Losa's  correspondence  reveals  further  improvement  in 
the  organization  of  the  "National"  or  Czechoslovak 
Church,  whose  priests  often  suffer  hardship,  as  no  pro 
vision  has  been  made  for  their  salaries  since  they  left 
the  Catholic  Church.  The  latest  indications  are  that 
a  hundred  thousand  Bibles  may  not  supply  the  present 
demand  ifor  them  in  Czechoslovakia.  Owing  to  the 
increased  cost  of  these,  America  ought  to  help  in  pro 
viding  them. 

The  foregoing  pages  describe  a  movement  in  Bohemia 
and  Moravia.  But  in  Slovakia  a  similar  need  has  been 
recently  discovered,  which  may  lead  to  important  de 

In  Slovakia  the  masses  have  been  either  Romish  or 
Lutheran;  and  leaders  of  the  Bohemian  Reformed 
churches  scarcely  knew  of  the  existence  of  any  Slovak 
Calvinists.  When  Mr.  Prudky  was  in  America  he  met 
some  of  them,  who  asked  him  to  visit  their  brethren  in 
Slovakia.  In  the  summer  of  1921  two  delegations  of 
Bohemians  did  so,  and  found  twenty  thousand  of  them 
in  a  fertile  plain,  having  views  of  the  Carpathians  to 
the  north,  a  region  between  Kosice  and  Uzhorod,  a 
region  that  suffered  in  the  wars,  the  Great  War,  and 
the  later  war  between  the  Bohemians  and  the  Reds. 
Whole  cemeteries  were  the  evidence.  Magyar  leaders 
gave  warning  of  these  visitors,  wolves  in  sheep's 
clothing,  as  they  said;  or  as  a  teacher  declared,  they 
were  not  Calvinists  but  Hussites,  not  praying  to  God 
but  to  Huss!  But  their  way  was  prepared  by  Rev. 
John  Sirny,  who  had  charge  of  the  Presbyterian  Slovak 
Church  at  Monessen,  Pennsylvania,  and  who  was 
visiting  Slovakia.  Their  audiences  welcomed  services, 
sometimes  Communion  services,  in  their  own  tongue. 
Their  dialect  was  interesting.  "Thy  speech  bewray- 


eth  thee,"  is  a  principle  of  linguistic  science.  And 
here  were  Slovaks,  whose  salutations,  various  accents, 
and  phrases,  were  different  from  those  of  western 
Slovaks,  sometimes  purely  Bohemian,  suggesting  plausi 
bly  that  they  were  descendants  of  Bohemian  exiles 
driven  out  by  persecutions  centuries  ago. 

Magyar  kultur,  religious  and  otherwise,  said  Mr. 
Prudky  in  his  letter  to  Dr.  Losa,  was  plainly  visible, 
for  the  school,  church,  magistrates,  army,  all  aimed  at 
the  obliteration  of  Slovak  self-consciousness,  at  their 
serfdom,  at  their  separation  from  Bohemians.  Their 
Calvinism  was  a  confess! onalism,  to  emphasize  a 
separation  from  Slovak  Lutherans,  formal  rather  than 
spiritual.  Their  very  orthography  was  Magyarized,  so 
as  to  make  it  difficult  for  them  to  read  the  writings  of 
Slovaks  or  Bohemians.  Yet  the  children  who  memor 
ized  catechisms  in  Magyar  parochial  schools,  or  the 
people  who  heard  sermons  in  that  tongue,  understood 
it  no  better  than  Latin.  The  visitation  of  twenty-three 
churches  by  these  brethren  supplied  them  with  abun 
dant  evidence  as  to  such  facts.  The  Magyar  Reformed 
Church  aims  at  "autonomy"  for  them,  which  means 
their  domination  by  Magyar  bishops  and  pastors. 
These  leaders  even  choose  the  delegates  for  their 
ecclesiastical  gathering,  the  "Conventus";  their  pastors 
also  are  appointed,  the  people  having  no  opportunities 
of  electing  them. 

The  results  of  this  tyranny  are  deplorable.  It  is  not 
strange  that  the  people  sometimes  call  themselves 
"Magyars"  though  they  do  not  know  that  language. 
They  have  been  as  serfs,  looking  up  to  Magyars  as 
aristocrats,  so  that  they  do  not  comprehend  true 
liberty.  Since  the  Czechoslovak  Republic  was  estab 
lished,  the  Calvinistic  Magyar  parochial  schools  have 
been  closed,  and  the  children  are  without  instruction. 
There  is  no  Slovak  Bible  with  Magyar  orthography, 


and  the  people  are  without  Bibles.  They  are  not  apt 
to  read  anything,  and  drift  into  an  unthinking  habit, 
so  that  some  Calvinists  voted  for  the  clerical  party! 
They  have  learned  to  emphasize  forms  only;  they  have 
superstitions,  even  prayers  for  the  dead,  sometimes 
paying  for  masses  in  Catholic  churches.  Their  pastors 
have  their  own  farms,  their  tithes,  their  fees  for 
baptisms,  or  other  functions,  but  no  salary  otherwise. 
Thus  the  people  have  no  idea  of  benevolence  and  its 
contributions,  and  their  relations  with  ministers  are 
pitiable.  These  have  been  as  lords  over  God's  heritage; 
the  people  cannot  be  born,  or  live,  or  die,  without 
these  officials,  mere  ceremonialists,  and  they  must  be 
paid.  Love  and  confidence  are  absent ;  and  increasingly, 
many  people  refuse  services  that  formerly  were  volun 
tarily  rendered.  The  people  make  merit  by  adorning 
profusely  the  pulpit  and  table  with  embroidery  and 
artificial  flowers,  and  the  long  farewells  for  the  dead  at 
funerals  are  aids  to  superstition. 

Mr.  Prudky  has  some  counsels  for  this  situation. 
Communications  with  Czech  Brethren  having  thus 
begun,  should  be  continued.  Until  the  separation  of 
Church  and  State  is  complete,  the  government  should 
not  recognize  pastors  who  do  not  understand  the 
language  of  their  people.  Spiritual  teachers  are  needed 
for  the  schools,  and  if  they  are  not  available,  even 
State  schools  are  preferable  to  parochial  schools  under 
a  Magyar  regime.  Good  schools  are  a  necessity.  Bibles 
are  a  necessity,  for  a  true  evangelization;  and  a  good 
colporteur,  going  from  hut  to  hut,  might  introduce  a 
new  era.  Literature  easily  understood  is  a  necessity. 
A  little  paper,  printed  at  first  in  Magyar  orthography, 
changing  slowly  to  Slovak,  and  containing  some  politi 
cal  or  agricultural  articles,  would  do  good.  Finally,  a 
Slovak  seniorat  or  presbytery  is  a  necessity.  Stipends 
and  subsidies  should  be  provided  for  Slovak  students 


for  the  ministry,  and  only  efficient,  spiritual  men  should 
work  in  Slovakia. 

This  unique  situation  in  Bohemia,  Moravia,  and 
Slovakia  warrants  the  hope  that  in  the  future,  and 
that  not  distant,  a  hundred  qualified  pastors,  and  then, 
if  the  Holy  Spirit  be  poured  out,  a  thousand,  may  not 
suffice  for  the  flocks  that  need  spiritual  care  in  Czecho 
slovakia,  requiring  many  problems  of  training,  instruc 
ting,  organizing  the  workers  and  the  people.  God 
grant  that  America  may  do  her  part  in  this  time  of 
harvest ! 

The  Czechoslovak  Review  of  Chicago  published  the 
Constitution  of  Czechoslovakia.  Article  106  says  that 
"All  inhabitants  of  the  Czechoslovak  Republic  enjoy, 
equally  with  the  citizens  of  the  Republic,  in  its  terri 
tory  full  and  complete  protection  without  regard  to  race 
or  religion."  But  as  Washington's  character  and  influ 
ence  was  a  powerful  guarantee  for  the  terms  of  the 
American  Constitution  when  it  was  regarded  as  an  un 
tried  experiment,  so  the  influence  of  Thomas  Garrigue 
Masaryk,  the  first  President,  elected  for  life  in 
Czechoslovakia,  is  a  fortunate  asset  for  the  stability 
and  progress  of  that  promising  country.  He  was  born 
March  7,  1850,  in  South  Moravia.  He  had  struggles 
with  poverty  in  getting  his  education,  in  the  grammar 
school  of  Brno,  capital  of  Moravia,  in  the  University  of 
Vienna,  and  later  in  the  University  of  Leipsic.  In  one 
of  his  journeys  in  Germany  and  Russia,  he  met  Miss 
Charlotte  Garrigue,  an  American  lady,  who  became  his 
wife.  In  1879  he  established  himself  as  a  lecturer  in  phi 
losophy  at  the  University  of  Vienna;  and  when  the  Uni 
versity  of  Prague  was  divided  into  a  German  and  a  Czech 
University,  he  was  transferred  to  this  new  Czech  insti 
tution.  A  significant  fact,  not  always  mentioned,  was 
that  in  the  course  of  these  activities,  though  born  a 
Catholic,  he  united  with  the  Reformed  Bohemian 


Church.  In  1891-1893,  he  served  as  a  deputy  in  the 
Austrian  Parliament,  coming  to  the  front  rank  as  a 
political  leader,  patriotic,  honest,  and  fearless.  His 
eyes  were  opened  to  the  hopeless  corruption  of  Austria, 
and  after  leaving  Parliament  he  continued  to  write 
and  to  advocate  reforms.  In  various  questions  he 
took  the  unpopular  side,  facing  storms  of  opposition, 
sometimes  from  powerful  clerical  organizations,  yet 
finally  winning  his  case.  He  was  reflected  to  Parlia 
ment  in  1907,  and  exposed  the  forgeries  by  which  the 
Austrian  authorities  tried  to  implicate  Serbia  in  a 
conspiracy,  and  by  which  in  the  Agram  political  trials 
fifty  Jugoslav  youths  were  condemned  to  death,  but 
rescued  by  Masaryk's  efforts.  The  War  broke  out  while 
he  was  on  important  journeys.  But  we  might  well 
let  him  tell  his  story  as  he  did  in  his  first  presidential 
message  to  the  National  Assembly,  in  the  ancient 
royal  castle  of  Prague,  in  December,  1918: 

"I  myself  saw  clearly  that  I  could  not  and  must  not 
remain  in  the  service  of  Austria-Hungary.  It  is  true 
that  at  first  I  hesitated  to  act;  I  felt  the  tremendous 
responsibility.  I  counted  the  cost  of  defeat — but  our 
soldiers,  refusing  to  serve,  and  surrendering  to  the 
Allies,  the  criminal  execution  of  our  men  who  rejoiced 
at  the  promises  of  the  Russian  commander,  the  entire 
machinery  of  Vienna  and  Budapest  barbarity,  forced 
me  to  a  decision."  He  mentions  his  journeys,  seeking 
information,  in  Vienna,  Holland,  Germany.  "In  the 
middle  of  December,  1914,  I  departed  for  Italy,  then 
still  neutral,  and  from  there  to  Switzerland.  I  had 
hoped  to  return  once  more  to  Prague  and  communicate 
the  information  gained  by  me,  but  it  was  no  longer 
possible.  In  the  fall  of  1915  I  proceeded  to  London, 
whence  I  made  frequent  trips  to  Paris."  In  London 
he  was  welcomed,  and  was  appointed  a  professor 
at  King's  College.  Moreover,  he  was  then  direct- 


ing  the  whole  Czechoslovak  movement  in  Russia, 
America,  and  France.  When  the  Russian  revolution 
broke  out,  he  went,  at  a  critical  time,  to  Russia,  and 
it  was  due  to  him  that  the  Czechoslovak  army  was 
organized.  "In  May,  1917,  I  had  to  go  to  Russia; 
from  Russia  I  departed  early  in  March  by  way  o* 
Siberia  to  Japan,  through  Japan  to  the  United  States, 
and  after  seven  months'  residence  there  I  returned  a : 
the  call  of  our  government  after  a  lapse  of  four  years 
as  the  first  president  of  the  Czechoslovak  Republic. 
.  .  .  The  history  of  our  army  in  Russia  is  the  history 
of  Russia  during  the  War.  Kerensky  at  first  was  against 
us,  until  he  found  out  that  his  offensive  was  to  a  large 
extent  carried  out  by  our  three  regiments,  and  thai 
our  boys  covered  the  fatal  flight  of  the  Russian  army. 
After  many  attempts  we  finally  managed  to  organize 
an  army  corps;  and  I  can  say  without  boasting  that 
organizing  this  army  during  the  anarchy  and  the 
complete  break-up  of  the  Russian  army  is  the  best 
testimony  to  the  maturity  not  merely  of  our  boys,  but 
of  the  whole  nation,  for  100,000  men  is  enough  to 
represent  a  nation.  .  .  .  Our  army  fighting  on  three 
fronts  won  our  liberty  for  us."  lie  then  recounts  the 
steps  by  which  the  Allies  recognized  Czechoslovakia, 
saying,  "It  is  natural  that  recognition  by  England 
and  the  United  States,  the  greatest  Allied  Powers, 
strengthened  us  greatly,  as  the  behavior  of  the  enemies 
made  plain.  .  .  .  Bismarck  said  that  the  master  of 
Bohemia  is  the  master  of  Europe.  He  described  thus 
in  his  own  way  the  special  world  significance  of  our 
nation.  We  are  the  westernmost  Slav  branch  in  the 
center  of  Europe,  and  we  successfully  helped  to  balk 
the  German  push  toward  the  east.  Our  victory  is 
likewise  the  victory  of  the  other  small  nations  menaced 
by  Germany  and  Austria."  He  then  shows  the  impor 
tance  of  cultivating  harmonious  relations  with  sur- 


rounding  nations,  and  with  a  renewed  Russia.  When 
he  discussed  the  Magyars,  he  tactfully  changed  from 
the  Bohemian  to  the  Slovak  dialect.  One  writer  in  the 
Bohemian  Review,  commemorating  his  seventieth 
birthday,  speaks  of  the  love  and  reverence  of  the  nation 
for  him:  "The  Czechoslovak  movement  for  inde 
pendence,  its  struggles  and  final  victory,  were  not 
possible  without  Masaryk."  Accordingly  it  means 
much  that  such  a  man,  identified  with  the  Reformed 
Church,  began  this  historic  message  with  a  quotation 
from  the  famous  educator  and  reformer,  a  well-known 
prophecy  of  John  Amos  Comenius:  "O  Bohemian 
people,  I  trust  in  God,  that  when  the  tempest  of  his 
wrath  brought  upon  our  heads  for  our  sins,  will  have 
passed  away,  the  reign  of  thy  cause  will  again  be 

The  evangelization  of  Slavdom  can  be  furthered  by 
a  plan  so  simple  that  it  is  within  the  reach  of  every 
American  Church  and  Christian.  It  would  be  an 
unspeakable  boon,  both  to  America  and  to  Slavdom, 
if  the  Monthly  Concert,  a  truly  concerted  movement 
among  Presbyterians,  were  to  restore  and  retain 
Czechoslovakia  or  Slavdom  in  its  list  of  topics.  Every 
month  these  topics  receive  regular  discussions,  for 
thousands  of  readers,  in  monthly  or  weekly  Presby 
terian  periodicals  throughout  America,  and  the 
missionary  societies,  young  people's  meetings,  mid 
week  services,  echo  and  emphasize  them.  But  for 
many  years,  up  to  1920,  Slavdom  has  been  excluded 
from  this  sphere  of  blessing.  Yet  this  is  a  sad  departure 
from  the  former  ideals  of  our  fathers.  Every  year, 
their  Monthly  Concert  program  included  "papal 
Europe,"  and  while  Italy  and  France  received  more 
attention,  being  more  familiar,  we  may  refer  to  the 
former  Presbyterian  magazine,  the  Foreign  Mission 
ary,  for  November,  1883,  where  there  is  a  brief 


quotation  concerning  the  history  and  spiritual  needs 
of  Bohemia  and  Moravia.  This  spiritual  sympathy, 
not  only  for  this  part  but  for  all  the  rest  of  Slavdom, 
is  greatly  needed  now.  This  magazine  for  September, 
1879,  quoted  the  report  of  a  previous  General  Assembly 
as  follows:  "Believing  that  an  instrumentality  which, 
in  the  history  of  our  Church,  has  been  so  signally  blessed, 
may  be  yet  made  a  means  of  blessing  to  the  whole  world, 
your  committee  call  the  attention  of  ministers  and 
elders  to  the  paramount  importance  of  making  more 
efficient  the  monthly  meeting  of  prayer  for  missions 
where  it  is  observed,  and  of  reviving  it  where  it  is 
fallen  into  disuse." 

The  Foreign  Missionary  for  August,  1886,  gives  a 
table  of  statistics  of  organizations  of  Reformed  churches 
on  the  Continent,  in  Bohemia,  France,  Italy,  Belgium, 
et  cetera,  also  another  table  showing  the  contributions 
sent  to  these  Reformed  churches  from  the  Presbyterian 
churches  of  Scotland,  England,  and  Ireland.  "The 
above,"  it  adds,  "does  not  tell  the  whole  story.  Many 
special  missions  are  aided  from  Scotland  and  England. 
.  Best  of  all,  a  number  of  students  have  been 
brought  from  the  countries  of  Austria,  educated  for 
the  ministry  in  Scotch  Theological  halls,  and  sent  back 
to  their  homes.  The  Reformed  churches  in  papal  lands 
have  solid  ground  upon  which  to  appeal  to  American 
Presbyterians.  'Their  debtors  we  are.'  Our  spiritual 
and  temporal  prosperity  depend  upon  principles  for 
which  their  earlier  generations  contended.  It  is  but 
due  return  for  us  now  to  help  them  back  to  temporal 
and  spiritual  vigor.  The  five  thousand  dollars  con 
tributed  to  them  from  the  treasury  of  our  Presby 
terian  Foreign  Board  last  year  might  well  be  multi 
plied  tenfold."  Sad  to  say,  for  many  years,  all  such 
advertisement  or  regular  news  and  discussions  of 
Bohemia,  now  in  Czechoslovakia,  or  of  Slavdom,  as 


well  as  of  Latin  Europe,  have  disappeared  from  Pres 
byterian  papers  in  the  United  States,  such  publications 
now  being  sporadic,  irregular;  and  such  contributions 
are  no  longer  reported  by  our  Foreign  Board.  These 
probably  never  were  part  of  a  regular  budget;  yet 
special  gifts,  due  largely  to  these  publications,  no 
doubt,  have  always  been  forwarded  according  to  desig 
nations  by  donors.* 

The  Presbyterian  denominations  of  this  country 
should  now  consider  anew  their  spiritual  responsibility 
for  Slavdom.  These  Monthly  Concert  programs 
would  be  enriched,  varied,  made  more  adequate,  if 
Czechoslovakia  or  Slavdom  were  included.  A  former 
secretary  of  the  Presbyterian  Foreign  Board  was  of  the 
opinion  that  whatever  the  topic  for  a  monthly  mission 
ary  meeting,  the  whole  world  as  the  field  for  evangeliza 
tion  should  be  the  real  theme.  A  multitude  of  states 
men  have  perceived  that  no  sufficient  discussion  of 
world  powers  could  be  had  if  Slavdom  were  omitted. 
And  shall  the  children  of  this  world  be  "in  their  genera 
tion  wiser  than  the  children  of  light"? 

The  history  of  the  Monthly  Concert  of  Prayer  for 
Missions,  or  as  it  has  sometimes  been  expressed,  of  a 
"Concert  of  Prayer  for  the  Conversion  of  the  World," 
has  never  been  fully  recorded.  We  may  note  two 
landmarks  in  such  a  blessed  history :  First,  a  discourse, 
making  nearly  two  hundred  pages,  of  Jonathan 
Edwards,  America's  greatest  theologian.  This  was 
"An  Humble  Attempt  To  Promote  Explicit  Agreement 
and  Visible  Union  of  God's  People  in  Extraordinary 
Prayer  For  the  Revival  of  Religion  and  the  Advance 
ment  of  Christ's  Kingdom  on  Earth."  His  text  was 
Zech.  8  :  20-22:  "Thus  saith  the  Lord  of  hosts;  It 
shall  yet  come  to  pass,  that  there  shall  come  people, 
and  the  inhabitants  of  many  cities;  and  the  inhabitants 

*The  recent  news  is  welcome,  that  our  Foreign  Board  will  include  Czechoslovakia 
and  other  countries  of  Europe  in  its  topics,  as  of  yore. 


of  one  city  shall  go  to  another,  saying,  Let  us  go  speedily 
to  pray  before  the  Lord,  and  to  seek  the  Lord  of  hosts : 
I  will  go  also.  Yea,  many  peoples  and  strong  nations 
shall  come  to  seek  the  Lord  of  hosts  in  Jerusalem,  and 
to  pray  before  the  Lord."  He  quoted  a  number  of 
other  prophecies,  and  showed  that  they  were  never 
fulfilled  before  the  coming  of  Christ,  and  hence  must 
refer  to  the  glory  and  enlargement  of  the  Christian 
Church.  This  text  shows  how  this  advancement 
should  be  introduced :  "By  great  Multitudes  in  different 
Towns  and  Countries  taking  up  a  joint  Resolution, 
.  .  .  that  they  will,  by  united  and  extraordinary 
Prayer,  seek  to  God  that  he  would  come  and  manifest 
himself,  and  grant  the  Tokens  and  Fruits  of  his  gracious 
Presence.  .  .  .  This  Disposition  to  ...  Prayer, 
and  Union  in  it,  will  gradually  spread  more  and  more, 
and  increase  to  greater  Degrees;  with  which  at  length 
will  gradually  be  introduced  a  Revival  of  Religion. 
.  .  .  In  this  Manner  Religion  shall  be  propagated, 
till  the  Awakening  reaches  those  that  are  in  the  highest 
Stations,  and  'till  whole  Nations  be  awaken'd,  and  there 
shall  be  at  length  an  Accession  of  many  of  the  chief 
Nations  of  the  World  to  the  Church  of  God." 

He  then  discusses  a  memorial  that  had  been  sent 
from  Scotland  to  America,  "for  continuing  a  Concert 
for  Prayer,  first  entered  into  in  the  Year  1744."  A 
number  of  Scottish  ministers  had  made  an  agreement 
to  observe  some  times  for  special  prayer,  and  to  con 
tinue  this  for  two  years.  At  the  expiration  of  the  time, 
this  memorial  was  published,  and  some  hundreds  of 
copies  sent  to  America,  urging  that  the  arrangement  be 
continued  and  extended. 

The  second  part  of  this  discourse  offered  "to  Con 
sideration  some  Things,  which  may  induce  the  People 
of  God  to  comply  with  the  Proposal  and  Request." 
This  master  mind  then  marshaled  arguments,  as  if 


burdened  with  a  message  of  high  import.  He  showed 
that  many  prophecies  of  the  future  glories  of  the  Church 
are  yet  unfulfilled,  surely  worth  praying  for.  He  had  a 
chapter  on  what  Christ  did  and  suffered  to  obtain  that 
day.  ''Surely  his  Disciples  .  .  .  should  also  .  .  . 
be  much  and  earnest  in  Prayer  for  it."  Of  all  the 
encouragements  to  this  duty,  signifying  importunity 
in  prayer,  he  knew  of  nothing  in  the  Bible  so  striking 
as  Isa.  62  : 6,  7:  "Keep  not  silence,  and  give  him  no 
rest,  till  he  establish,  and  till  he  make  Jerusalem  a 
praise  in  the  earth."  Throughout  the  Bible,  especially 
the  psalms,  no  other  prayers  are  so  frequent  as  those 
for  the  advancement  of  the  Church,  God's  Kingdom  of 
grace  on  earth.  After  urging  the  special  needs  of  that 
time,  in  the  eighteenth  century,  and  the  advantages  of 
such  a  union  of  Christians,  he  refuted  some  objections 
and  in  conclusion  quoted  Isa.  25  :  9:  "It  shall  be  said 
in  that  day,  Lo,  this  is  our  God;  ...  we  will  .  .  . 
rejoice  in  his  salvation." 

Another  publication,  a  book  of  about  a  hundred 
small  pages,  by  Dr.  Samuel  Miller,  of  Princeton,  New 
Jersey,  appeared  in  1832,  "Letters  on  the  Observance 
of  the  Monthly  Concert  in  Prayer:  Addressed  to  the 
Members  of  the  Presbyterian  Church  in  the  United 
States."  He,  too,  discussed  the  necessity  of  prayer, 
and  of  intercession,  and  the  blessedness  of  union  with 
others  in  this.  He  referred  to  the  origin  of  the  Monthly 
Concert  in  the  Church  of  Scotland  about  a  hundred 
years  before,  and  how  Edwards,  "then  of  Northampton, 
in  Massachusetts,  labored  with  no  small  diligence  and 
zeal  to  ...  promote  the  plan."  In  1784,  this 
appointment  was  made  monthly,  on  the  first  Monday 
evening  of  each  month.  The  Presbyterian  General 
Assembly  in  1830  issued  a  pastoral  letter  calling  atten 
tion  to  this  subject.  A  few  years  later,  it  recom 
mended  a  change  to  the  first  Sunday  afternoon  in 


every  month  for  the  churches  that  might  find  it  con 
venient.  Dr.  Miller  fervently  pleaded  for  more  mission 
ary  zeal  in  this  matter.  "Again  I  say  to  every  minister, 
every  member,  and  every  well-wisher  of  our  Zion, 
Awake!  Awake!  Pray  and  labor  without  ceasing  until 
there  shall  be  a  general  and  united  movement  of  our 
whole  Church  to  carry  the  glorious  gospel  to  every 
kindred  and  people  and  nation  and  tongue;  until  the 
knowledge  and  glory  of  the  Lord  shall  cover  the  earth 
as  the  waters  fill  the  sea,  Amen!" 

The  Presbyterian  Church  has  followed  in  its  missions 
a  different  plan  from  that  of  some  other  denominations, 
since  it  never  has  sent  missionaries  to  Europe.  Dr. 
Ferdinand  Cisaf,  superintendent  for  the  Reformed 
Church  in  Moravia,  emphatically  approved  this  plan 
in  his  article  on  "Los  von  Rom!"  ("Away  from  Rome!") 
in  the  Presbyterian  and  Reformed  Review,  October, 
1901:  "Perhaps  only  Presbyterians  have  the  better 
understanding  of  the  matter  that  to  strengthen  the 
Continental  Protestant  Churches  is  the  safest  way  to 
evangelize  Catholic  Europe."  Some  years  ago  the 
question  was  raised  in  the  General  Assembly  whether 
it  might  be  well  to  change  this  plan,  and  the  matter 
was  finally  referred  to  the  Board  of  Foreign  Missions; 
its  report  in  part  is  as  follows  (Minutes  of  the  General 
Assembly,  1909,  p.  341): 

"I.  That  it  is  inexpedient  at  the  present  time  for 
the  Board  of  Foreign  Missions  of  the  Presbyterian 
Church  in  the  U.  S.  A.  to  establish  Foreign  Missions 
on  the  Continent  of  Europe,  for  the  following  reasons: 

"(a)  The  Presbyterian  Church  has  already  more 
foreign  missionary  responsibilities  than  it  is  dis 
charging.  (6)  The  primary  responsibility  for  work  in 
Europe  rests  upon  the  Evangelical  Churches  of  Great 
Britain  and  the  Continent,  which  have  recognized  this 
obligation,  and  which  in  turn  leave  the  vast  work  to 


be  done  on  the  western  hemisphere  to  the  American 
and  Canadian  Churches,  (c)  The  establishment  of 
Foreign  Missions  in  Europe  by  the  American  Churches 
is  regarded  on  the  Continent  and  Great  Britain  as  an 
unwise  and  harmful  policy. 

"II.  But  there  is  need  of  friendly  help  in  behalf  of 
the  Reformed  Churches  on  the  Continent,  and  the 
Evangelical  Churches  of  Great  Britain  and  America 
should  show  a  large  sympathy  for  their  brethren  in  the 
Continental  countries.  The  Board,  however,  cannot 
make  any  provision  for  such  help  out  of  its  woefully 
inadequate  income;  but  it  is  cordially  ready  to  receive 
and  forward  any  special  designated  gifts  for  these 
churches  and  their  work,  provided  that  the  agents  to 
whom  the  money  is  to  be  sent  and  the  objects  of  work 
to  which  it  is  to  be  devoted  are  officially  authorized  by 
the  highest  ecclesiastical  courts  of  the  Churches  con 
cerned,  and  approved  by  the  General  Secretary  and 
Executive  Committee  of  the  Presbyterian  Alliance. 
In  acting  thus  for  those  interested,  the  Board  could  not 
assume  any  responsibility  of  accounting  for  the  receipt 
of  funds  and  transmitting  them  to  the  authorized 

To  propose  resolutions  of  sympathy  in  the  General 
Assembly  for  the  Reformed  Churches  of  Czecho 
slovakia,  and  then  do  nothing,  is  like  saying,  "Depart 
in  peace,  be  ye  warmed  and  filled,  "notwithstanding  the 
fact  that  urgent  needs  are  unsupplied.  Organizations 
were  formed  some  years  ago,  which  interested  numbers 
of  Presbyterians,  to  help  Reformed  Churches  of  France 
and  Belgium,  also  Waldensian  societies  to  assist  the 
Waldensians  of  Italy.  A  sensible  and  practical  plan 
for  helping  the  Reformed  Churches  of  Czechoslovakia 
has  been  proposed  by  Dr.  W.  L.  McEwan,  of  Pitts 
burgh,  Pennsylvania,  and  put  into  effect  by  his  organ 
ization  of  "The  American  Hussite  Society."  If  thou- 


sands  of  Presbyterians  throughout  the  United  States 
were  to  become  members  and  contributors  toward  this 
organization,  it  would  go  farther  than  ever  to  supply 
the  needs  of  Slav  saints,  and  occasion  many  thanks 
givings  to  God. 


The  two  things  here  to  be  emphasized  are  the  Amer 
ican  Hussite  Society  and  the  Monthly  Concert  of 
Prayer  for  Missions.  The  Hussite  Society  is  admirably 
adapted  to  be  the  organ  for  all  the  Presbyterian  and 
Reformed  Churches  of  America  in  obtaining  funds  for 
Czechoslovakia.  The  true  policy  for  all  these  denom 
inations  must  be  to  send  no  American  missionaries  to 
Europe,  but  to  send  funds  to  aid  our  Reformed  brethren 
there.  The  need  for  this  is  formally  recognized,  but  in 
practice  such  contributions  are  difficult  to  secure,  in 
the  face  of  the  increasing  regular  budgets  of  all  churches. 
Hence  the  need  for  this  organization.  Moreover,  the 
Monthly  Concert  of  Prayer,  including  Czechoslovakia 
in  its  topics,  will  be  a  powerful  help,  making  its  appeal 
to  thousands,  through  Church  papers  and  missionary 
organizations.  Thus  there  will  be  a  more  extensive 
publication  of  the  great  and  growing  importance  of 
Slav  countries,  and  the  need  of  more  evangelical  work 
in  them,  including  colportage  and  the  training  of  a  host 
of  missionaries. 

"Pray  ye  ...  the  Lord  of  the  harvest,  that  he 
will  send  forth  laborers  into  his  harvest."  "If  thou 
forbear  to  deliver  them  that  are  drawn  unto  death,  and 
those  that  are  ready  to  be  slain;  if  thou  sayest,  Behold, 
we  knew  it  not;  doth  not  he  that  pondereth  the 
heart  consider  it?  and  he  that  keepeth  thy  soul,  doth 
not  he  know  it?  and  shall  not  he  render  to  every 
man  according  to  his  works?"  We  ourselves,  the 


whole  Church  to-day,  need  the  same  spirit  as  that 
of  Samuel,  when  he  spoke  to  Israel:  "Moreover 
as  for  me,  God  forbid  that  I  should  sin  against  the 
Lord  in  ceasing  to  pray  for  you." 



McLanahan:  "Our  People  of  Foreign  Speech." 

Grose:  "Aliens  or  Americans?" 

Count  von  Liitzow:  "Bohemia:  An  Historical  Sketch." 

Thomas  Capek:  "The  Slovaks  of  Hungary." 

R.  W.  Seton- Watson :  "Racial  Problems  in  Hungary." 

W.  S.  Monroe:  "Bohemia  and  the  Czechs."  (See  also 
his  work  on  "Bulgaria  and  Her  People.") 

Francis  H.  Palmer:  "Austro-Hungarian  Life  in  Town 
and  Country."  (Also  the  volumes  of  the  same  series 
pertaining  to  Slav  countries.  Likewise,  the  volumes 
in  the  series,  "The  Story  of  the  Nations.") 

W.  R.  Morfill:  "The  Story  of  Poland." 

Leroy-Beaulieu :  "Empire  of  the  Tsars  and  the  Rus 
sians."  3  vols. 

Latimer:    "Liberty  of  Conscience  Under  Three  Tsars." 

Pamphlets,  published  by  the  Presbyterian  Board  of 
Publication  and  Sabbath  School  Work:  "Protes 
tantism  in  Poland,"  C.  E.  Edwards;  "The  Story  of 
the  Bohemian  Church,"  W.  G.  Blaikie. 

Senate  Document  No.  662,  1911:  Dictionary  of  Races 
and  Peoples. 

National  Geographic  Magazine:  February,  1917,  and 
December,  1918. 

Emily  Greene  Balch:  "Our  Slavic  Fellow  Citizens." 


Taking  the  number  of  Slavs  as  given  in  the  Ency 
clopedia  Americana,  1920,  disregarding  their  losses  in 


the  World  War,  it  would  exceed  a  hundred  and  seventy 
million.  If  these  were  to  have  the  happy  increase 
recorded  in  the  United  States  in  the  first  decades  of 
its  history,  doubling  every  thirty  years,  then  before 
some  infants  of  to-day  reach  fourscore  years  the  Slavs 
themselves  would  number  nearly  a  billion.  Their 
territories,  too,  if  properly  developed,  without  any 
annexations,  would  amply  support  them.  For  this  an 
American  illustration,  without  details  of  discussion, 
may  suffice.  If  the  potato,  an  important  article  of 
diet  be  supplied,  famine  would  not  seem  so  threatening. 
Assume  five  hundred  bushels  of  potatoes  per  acre,  not 
a  record  yield,  to  be  obtainable  by  modern  industry, 
and  the  per  capita  consumption  annually  two  and  a 
half  bushels,  then  potatoes  for  a  billion  persons  could  be 
produced  by  one  fourth  the  arable  land  of  Colorado, 
described  as  the  most  mountainous  of  American  states. 
If  the  vast,  undeveloped  areas  of  Slavdom  are  culti 
vated  by  an  industrious,  intelligent  race,  the  cost  of 
living  might  everywhere  be  relieved.  The  area  of  all 
the  Russias  before  the  War  would  eclipse  that  of  the 
full  moon.  Without  here  quoting  logarithms,  we  may 
recall  that  the  area  of  a  sphere  is  the  square  of  its 
diameter,  multiplied  by  "pi"  which  is  nearly  3.1416. 
The  diameter  of  the  moon  is  2163  miles,  and  the  full 
moon  presents  to  us  half  the  area  of  that  sphere,  or 
something  over  seven  million  square  miles.  Russian 
dominions  exceeded  eight  million  square  miles,  eclipsing 
the  full  moon,  "which  was  to  be  proved,"  as  geometries 
have  said. 


The   cruelty   of  forcing   the   Magyar   tongue   upon 
Slovaks  may  be  illustrated  by  a  comparison  of  two 



Slav  versions  of  The  Lord's  Prayer,  the  Bohemian, 
practically  identical  with  Slovak,  and  the  Polish,  with 
the  Magyar.  If  rendered  audibly,  the  resemblance  of 
the  first  two,  to  a  Slav  ear  would  be  far  more  striking 
than  to  American  eyes  from  the  printed  page.  Only  a 
little  more  than  one  word  to  a  verse  in  these  Slav 
tongues  is  unlike,  and  these  may  be  guessed  by  Slavs 
from  the  connection.  Not  a  single  Magyar  word 
resembles  any  corresponding  Slav  word.  The  only 
word  common  to  all  three  is  the  Hebrew  word,  Amen! 


9.  Otce  nds,  kteryz 
jsi     v     nebesich, 
posvSt'  se  jmeno 

10.  Pfid'  kralovstvi 

Bud'  vule  tva  jako 
v  nebi  tak  i  na 

11.  Chleb  nas  vez- 
de  j  si      de  j      nam 

12.  A  odpust'  nam 
viny  nase,  jakoz  i 
my      odpoustime 
vinnikum  nasim. 

13.  I  neuvod'  nas  v 
pokuseni,  ale  zbav 
nas  od  zleho. 

Nebo  tve  jest  krd- 
lovstvi,  i  moc,  i 
slava,  na  v8ky. 

Ojcze   nasz,   kt6rys 

jest  w  niebiesiech! 

Swie       sie,      imie. 

Przyjdz      krolestwo 

badz     wola     twoja 

jako  w  niebie,  tak 

i  na  ziemi. 

Chleba  naszego 
powszedniego  daj 
nam  dzisiaj. 

I  odpus"c  nam  nasze 
winy,  jako  i  my 
odpuszczamy  nas- 
zym  winowajcom; 

I  nie  wwodf  nas  na 
pokuszenie,  ale 
nas  zbaw  ode  zle- 


albowiem  twoje  jest 
kr61estwo,  i  moc, 
i  chwala,  na  wieki. 


Mi  Atyank,  ki  vagy 
a  mennyekben, 
szenteltessek  meg 
a  te  neved; 

Jojjon  el  a  te  orsza- 

legyen  meg  a  te 
akaratod,  mint  a 
mennyben  ugy  a 
foldon  is. 

A  mi  mindennapi 
kenyeriinket  add 
meg  nekiink  ma. 

Es  bocsasd  meg  a  mi 
vetkeinket,  mike- 
pen  mi  is  megboc- 
satunk  azoknak,  a 
kik  eUenunk  vet- 

Es  ne  vigy  minket 
kisertetbe,  de  sza- 
badits  meg  min 
ket  a  gonoszto"!. 

Mert  tied  az  orszag 
es  a  hatalom  ^s  a 
dicsosdg  mind  6r- 
okke.  Amen! 


Americans  should  recognize  the  difference  between 
Magyars  and  Slovaks.  Slovaks  come  from  Hungary, 
but  are  not  real  Hungarians.  Magyars,  rulers  of  Hun 
gary,  oppressed  Slovaks  in  a  way  never  experienced  by 
Americans,  even  under  George  the  Third,  since  they 
forbade  them  to  learn  their  own  language.  Some  Slav 
leaders  estimate  that  the  Magyar  tongue  is  spoken  by 
about  seven  millions.  The  Bohemian  or  Slovak  tongue 
is  a  key  to  languages  spoken  by  nearly  two  hundred 
millions.  The  Magyar  is  an  agglutinative  language, 
not  inflected  like  Slav  or  Indo-European  tongues;  it  is 
not  Indo-European,  but  an  Asiatic  intruder,  a  linguistic 
island  in  the  midst  of  Europe. 


Converts  among  immigrants  in  America  have  a 
keen  appreciation  of  the  Reformation,  and  desire 
another  Reformation  for  their  own  homelands.  They 
would  see  their  experience  justified  in  a  document  which 
was  a  landmark  of  that  movement,  Calvin's  reply  to 
Cardinal  Sadoleto,  a  work  that  Luther  said  "had 
hands  and  feet."  Note  the  following  paragraphs: 

"Since  you  have  cited  us  as  defenders  to  the  tribunal 
of  God,  I  have  no  hesitation  in  calling  upon  you  there 
to  meet  me.  Our  cause,  as  it  is  supported  by  the 
truth  of  God,  will  be  at  no  loss  for  a  complete  defense. 
I  speak  not  of  our  persons,  whose  safety  will  be  found 
not  in  defense,  but  in  humble  confession  and  suppliant 
deprecation;  but  in  so  far  as  our  ministry  is  concerned, 
there  is  none  of  us  who  will  not  be  able  thus  to  speak: 

"O  Lord,  I  have,  indeed,  experienced  how  difficult 
and  grievous  it  was  to  bear  the  invidious  accusations 
with  which  I  was  harassed  o"n  the  earth;  but  with  the 
same  confidence  with  which  I  then  appealed  to  thy 
tribunal  I  now  appear  before  thee,  because  I  know  that 
in  thy  judgment  truth  always  reigns.  They  charge 


me  with  two  of  the  worst  crimes,  heresy  and  schism. 
The  heresy  was  that  I  dared  to  protest  against  the 
dogmas  which  they  received.  But  what  could  I  have 
done?  I  heard  from  thy  mouth  that  there  was  no 
other  light  of  truth  which  could  direct  our  souls  into 
the  way  of  life,  than  that  which  is  kindled  by  thy  Word. 
I  heard  that  whatever  human  minds  could  conceive  of 
themselves  regarding  thy  majesty,  the  worship  of  thy 
deity,  and  the  mysteries  of  thy  religion  was  vanity.  I 
heard  that  the  introduction  into  thy  Church,  of  doc 
trines  sprung  from  the  human  brain,  was  presumption. 
.  .  .  But  when  I  turned  toward  men,  I  saw  very 
different  principles  prevailing.  Those  who  were 
regarded  as  leaders  of  faith  neither  understood  thy 
Word  nor  cared  greatly  for  it.  Among  the  people 
themselves,  the  highest  honor  paid  to  thy  Word  was 
to  revere  it  from  a  distance  as  a  thing  inaccessible,  and 
to  abstain  from  all  investigation  of  it.  Thy  Christ 
was  indeed  worshiped  as  God,  and  retained  the  name 
of  Saviour;  but  where  he  ought  to  have  been  honored, 
he  was  left  almost  without  honor.  There  was  none  who 
duly  considered  that  one  sacrifice  which  he  offered  on 
the  cross,  and  by  which  he  reconciled  us  to  thyself, 
— none  who  ever  dreamed  of  thinking  of  his  eternal 
priesthood,  and  the  intercession  depending  upon  it — 
none  who  trusted  in  his  righteousness  only.  .  .  „ 
And  then  when  all,  with  no  small  insult  to  thy  mercy, 
put  confidence  in  good  works,  when  by  good  works 
they  strove  to  merit  thy  favor,  to  procure  justification, 
to  expiate  their  sins,  and  make  satisfaction  to  thee 
(each  of  these  things  obliterating  and  making  void  the 
virtue  of  Christ's  cross),  they  were  yet  altogether 
ignorant  wherein  good  works  consisted.  For,  just  as 
if  they  were  not  at  all  instructed  in  righteousness  by 
thy  law,  they  had  fabricated  for  themselves  many 
useless  frivolities,  as  a  means  of  procuring  thy  favor, 


and  on  these  they  so  plumed  themselves,  that,  in  com 
parison  of  them,  they  almost  condemned  the  standard 
of  true  righteousness  which  thy  law  recommended. 
That  I  might  perceive  these  things  thou,  O  Lord,  didst 
shine  upon  me  with  the  brightness  of  thy  Spirit;  that 
I  might  comprehend  how  impious  and  noxious  they 
were,  thou  didst  bear  before  me  the  torch  of  thy  Word; 
that  I  might  abominate  them  as  they  deserved,  thou 
didst  stimulate  my  soul.  .  .  .  As  to  the  charge  of 
forsaking  thy  Church,  which  they  were  wont  to  bring 
against  me,  there  is  nothing  of  which  conscience 
accuses  me,  unless,  indeed,  he  is  to  be  considered  a 
deserter,  who  seeing  the  soldiers  routed  and  scattered 
and  abandoning  their  ranks,  raises  the  leader's  standard, 
and  recalls  them  to  their  posts.  .  .  .  Always,  both 
by  word  and  deed,  have  I  protested  how  eager  I  was 
for  unity.  Mine,  however,  was  a  unity  of  the  Church, 
which  should  begin  and  end  in  thee." 

This  solemn  scene  was  supplemented  by  another 
confession  from  a  layman : 

"I,  O  Lord,  as  I  had  been  educated  from  a  boy, 
always  professed  the  Christian  faith.  But  at  first  I  had 
no  other  reason  for  my  faith  than  that  which  then 
everywhere  prevailed.  Thy  Word,  which  ought  to 
have  shone  on  all  thy  people  like  a  lamp,  was  taken 
away,  or  at  least  suppressed  as  to  us.  .  .  .  I  antici 
pated  a  future  resurrection,  but  hated  to  think  of  it, 
as  being  an  event  most  dreadful.  And  this  feeling  not 
only  had  dominion  over  me  in  private,  but  was  derived 
from  the  doctrine  which  was  then  uniformly  delivered 
to  the  people  by  their  Christian  teachers.  They, 
indeed,  preached  of  thy  clemency  toward  men,  but 
confined  it  to  those  who  should  show  themselves 
deserving  of  it.  They,  moreover,  placed  this  desert 
in  the  righteousness  of  works,  so  that  he  only  was 
received  into  thy  favor  who  reconciled  himself  to  thee 


by  works.  .  .  .  When,  however,  I  had  performed  all 
these  things,  though  I  had  some  intervals  of  quiet,  I 
was  still  far  off  from  true  peace  of  conscience;  for, 
whenever  I  descended  into  myself,  or  raised  my  mind 
to  thee,  extreme  terror  seized  me — terror  which  no 
expiations  nor  satisfactions  could  cure.  .  .  .  Still, 
as  nothing  better  offered,  I  continued  the  course  which 
I  had  begun,  when,  lo,  a  very  different  form  of  doctrine 
started  mp,  not  one  which  led  us  away  from  the 
Christian  profession,  but  one  which  brought  it  back  to 
its  fountainhead,  and,  as  it  were,  clearing  away  the 
dross,  restored  it  to  its  original  purity.  Offended  by 
the  novelty,  I  lent  an  unwilling  ear,  and  at  first,  I 
confess,  strenuously  and  passionately  resisted;  for 
(such  is  the  firmness  or  effrontery  with  which  it  is 
natural  to  men  to  persist  in  the  course  which  they  have 
once  undertaken)  it  was  with  the  greatest  difficulty  I 
was  induced  to  confess  that  I  had  all  my  life  long  been 
in  ignorance  and  error.  .  .  .  My  mind  being  now 
prepared  for  serious  attention,  I  at  length  perceived,  as 
if  light  had  broken  in  upon  me,  in  what  a  stye  of  error 
I  had  wallowed,  and  how  much  pollution  and  impurity 
I  had  thereby  contracted.  Being  exceedingly  alarmed 
at  the  misery  into  which  I  had  fallen,  and  much  more 
at  that  which  threatened  me  in  view  of  eternal  death, 
I,  as  in  duty  bound,  made  it  my  first  business  to  betake 
myself  to  thy  way,  condemning  my  past  life  with  groans 
and  tears.  And  now,  O  Lord,  what  remains  to  a  wretch 
like  me,  but  instead  of  defense,  earnestly  to  supplicate 
thee  not  to  judge  according  to  its  deserts  that  fearful 
abandonment  of  thy  Word,  from  which,  in  wonderful 
goodness,  thou  hast  delivered  me." 

The  conclusion  of  this  reply,  as  Dr.  Reyburn  says, 
in  his  "Life  of  Calvin,"  sums  up  the  whole  argument : 
"The  Lord  grant,  Sadoleto,  that  you  and  your  party 
may  at  length  perceive  that  the  only  true  bond  of 


Church  unity  is  Christ  the  Lord,  who  has  reconciled 
us  to  God  the  Father,  and  will  gather  us  out  of  our 
present  dispersion  into  the  fellowship  of  his  body, 
that  so,  through  his  one  Word  and  Spirit,  we  may 
grow  together  into  one  heart  and  soul." 


The  Board  of  Publication  and  Sabbath  School  Work 
of  the  Presbyterian  Church  makes  interesting  state 
ments  about  its  periodicals  for  Slavs: 

"There  are  more  than  sixteen  hundred  newspapers 
published  in  the  United  States  in  foreign  languages. 
Most  of  them  are  devoted  exclusively  to  the  printing 
of  secular  news  and  not  a  few  of  them  are  the  pro 
moters  of  socialistic  and  anarchistic  propaganda  of 
the  most  virulent  type.  During  the  War  many  of  them 
were  filled  with  disloyal  utterances  and  some  were  dis 
continued  by  order  of  the  Federal  Government.  Since 
the  close  of  the  War,  the  vigilance  of  the  Government 
with  reference  to  these  publications  has  relaxed  and 
many  new  periodicals  have  appeared  representing  the 
most  radical  views 

"Without  doubt  it  is  the  duty  of  the  Church  to  meet 
this  situation,  which  in  some  quarters  has  become 
fraught  with  danger  to  our  American  institutions,  by 
an  equally  aggressive  and  persistent  publication  and 
distribution  of  literature  devoted  to  the  propagation 
of  evangelical  truth  and  Americanization."  For  the 
Bohemians  or  Czechoslovaks,  "Our  sixteen-page  weekly 
paper,  KresfanskS  Listy  (Christian  Journal),  has  been 
published  since  1906  under  the  editorial  and  business 
management  of  Dr.  Vaclav  Losa,  a  Bohemian  mission 
ary  pastor,  who,  because  of  his  knowledge  of  the  needs 
of  the  immigrants  and  his  unusual  executive  ability, 
was  appointed  superintendent  of  the  work  among 
foreign-speaking  peoples  in  Pittsburgh  Presbytery.  It 


is  worthy  of  note  that  under  his  guidance  the  Presby 
tery  of  Pittsburgh  is  maintaining  a  larger  work  among 
foreign-speaking  people  than  any  other  presbytery. 
Under  his  efficient  leadership  this  Bohemian  paper 
has  been  the  means  of  strengthening  the  efforts  of  our 
own  and  other  evangelical  bodies  among  that  people. 
.  .  .  For  the  use  of  the  children  in  the  Bohemian 
Sunday  schools  we  are  publishing  a  weekly  paper, 
Besidka  (Story  Hour),  containing  stories  for  children 
which  the  parents  may  read  to  them." 

Concerning  the  Ruthenians  (or  Ukrainians),  "while 
the  Protestant  constituency  among  Ruthenians  is 
comparatively  small,  their  need  of  a  periodical  is  as 
urgent  as  that  of  other  classes  of  immigrants  whom 
we  are  endeavoring  to  influence.  During  recent  years 
there  has  been  a  well-defined  movement  away  from 
the  authority  and  worship  of  the  Greek  Catholic  Church. 
Large  numbers  have  turned  to  athesim  and  infidelity. 
For  many  years,  under  the  oppression  of  Russia  and 
with  the  approval  of  the  Church  authorities,  these 
people  have  been  prohibited  from  using  their  own 
language  either  in  the  schools  or  in  print.  In  America 
they  have  a  few  newspapers,  but  our  weekly  paper, 
Sojuz  (Union),  is  the  only  religious  periodical  in  the 
Ukrainian  tongue  published  in  the  United  States." 

Lastly,  as  to  Poles,  "for  the  use  of  missionaries 
among  the  Polish  immigrants  our  Board  has  united 
with  the  Publication  Board  of  the  United  Presbyterian 
Church  in  the  publication  of  a  monthly  periodical 
entitled  Slowa  Zywota  (Words  of  Life).  We  have  but 
few  missions  among  the  Poles,  and  at  present  these 
papers  are  circulated  mainly  through  our  colporteurs. 
The  seed  that  has  thus  been  sown  is  giving  evidences 
of  growth  and  the  outlook  for  the  future  of  this  work  is 
very  encouraging." 



A  new  version  of  the  Bible  is  "a  well  at  which 
millions  may  drink";  and  the  British  and  Foreign 
Bible  Society  has  excelled  all  other  evangelical  agencies 
in  opening  such  wells  for  Slavdom.  Data  may  be 
obtained  from  its  annual  reports,  but  especially  from 
its  encyclopedic  work,  the  greatest  ever  attempted  of 
its  kind,  "A  Historical  Catalogue  of  Printed  Editions 
of  Holy  Scripture."  The  first  volume,  the  English 
section,  appeared  in  1903. 

Beginning  with  the  most  ancient  of  the  Slav  versions, 
that  which  is  popularly  called  "Slavonic,"  we  quote: 
"The  term  'Slavonic'  is  popularly  applied  to  that  form 
of  Slav  speech  which  survives  in  ecclesiastical  use  in 
Russia  and  other  Slav  countries.  Scholars  distinguish 
three  main  recensions,  Bulgarian,  Serbian,  and  Russian, 
in  ecclesiastical  Slavonic.  The  majority  of  the  editions 
belong  to  the  Russian  form  of  ecclesiastical  Slavonic 
which  is  now  in  use  among  all  Slavs  of  the  Orthodox 
Church."  The  earliest  editions  were  the  Psalter 
(A.D.  1491),  the  Gospels  (1512),  the  Acts  and  the 
Epistles  (Moscow,  1564),  generally  considered  to  be  the 
earliest  book  printed  in  Russia,  and  the  entire  Slavonic 
Bible  in  Volhynia,  Russia,  in  1581.  But  in  the  seven 
teenth  and  eighteenth  centuries,  the  hundreds  of 
editions,  Testaments,  and  portions  of  this  version 
catalogued,  would  amaze  all  who  are  unacquainted  with 
such  a  history.  All  this  implies  myriads  of  readers. 
The  Russian  Bible  Society  was  founded  in  1813. 
Before  it  was  suppressed  in  1826  it  was  estimated  that 
it  had  published  at  Moscow  and  Petrograd  editions  of 
the  Bible  and  New  Testament  in  Slavonic  and  Russian 
amounting  to  over  500,000  copies." 

Of  Russian  Scriptures  we  note:  1.  The  White  Rus 
sian,  in  which  a  version  was  made  in  the  first  part  of 
the  sixteenth  century.  The  language  is  "a  Polish 


Russian,  used  in  White  Russia  and  parts  of  Lithuania. 
To-day  the  White  Russian  differs  from  the  standard 
form  of  the  language  in  little  else  than  pronunciation. 
The  first  editions  were  at  Prague,  (Job,  1517)." 

2.  The  Great  Russian,  which  is  simply  the  standard 
form  of  modern  Russian.    "All  the  editions  are  printed 
in  the  Russian  character  ('Grajdanski')  which  is  the 
modern  form  of  the  Cyrillic  character  introduced  by 
Peter  the  Great.    As  in  the  case  of  the  Slavonic  Bible, 
the  order  and  number  of  the  books  in  this  and  other 
editions  of  the  Old  Testament,  published  by  the  Synod, 
agree  with  those  in  the  Septuagint."    The  B.  F.  B.  S. 
report  for   1910  gives  further  details  as  to  the  Old 
Testament    authorized    and    issued    by    the    Russian 
Church.     "It  is  a  translation  from  the  Hebrew.     But 
the  short  variations  which  are  found  in  the  LXX  are 
inserted  in  the  text  within  square  brackets,  with  a 
footnote  on  the  first  page  pointing  out  the  significance 
of  these  brackets.    Of  such  additions  there  are  a  dozen 
in  the  first  chapter  of  Genesis.    The  apocryphal  books 
and  passages  are  also  included,  with  a  footnote  in  every 
case  stating  that  they  are  translated  from  the  Greek." 

3.  The  Little  Russian,  or  Ruthenian,  used  in  Galicia 
and  southern  Russia.     The  Ruthenians  now  prefer  to 
be  called  Ukrainians.    The  first  edition  of  the  Ruthenian 
Scriptures   was   the   Pentateuch    (1869)    at   Lemberg. 
The  B.  F.  B.  S.  reports  state  that  the  entire  Ruthenian 
Bible  was  published  in  1904,  and  that  thus  another 
European  race  is  provided  with  the  whole  Bible  at  the 
expense  of  the  B.  F.   B.   S.  and  through  its  instru 
mentality.     In  1910  it  was  stated  that  this  edition,  of 
course  not  containing  the  Apocrypha,  had  been  for 
bidden  in  Russia,  but  would  now  be  allowed  if  duty 
be  paid. 

The  earliest  editions  of  the  Serbo-Croatian  Scriptures 
were  the  Liturgical  Epistles  and  Gospels  (1495)  and 


the  New  Testament  (1563).  The  Croatians  gave  us 
the  word  "cravat,"  from  their  national  name.  In 
B.  F.  B.  S.  price  lists,  the  Croatian  Scriptures  are 
included  under  "Serbian,"  with  the  statement  that  they 
are  in  Latin  character,  the  Serbian  being  in  a  modified 
Russian  alphabet.  Their  report  for  1919  mentions 
progress  in  preparing  an  improved  Serbian  version. 

In  the  report  for  1902,  mention  is  made  of  the  death 
of  Dr.  Long,  of  the  Methodist  Episcopal  Church,  "till 
recently  a  professor  in  Robert  College  on  the  Bos- 
phorus.  Dr.  Long's  relations  with  the  Bible  Society 
go  back  to  18GO,  when  he  and  the  late  Dr.  Riggs,  with 
two  native  Bulgarian  scholars,  were  appointed  to 
revise  and  further  translate  the  Scriptures  into  Bul 
garian.  This  little  band  completed  its  labors  in  1871, 
when  the  whole  Bible  was  printed  at  Constantinople. 
This  has  ever  since  been  the  standard  Bulgarian 
version."  The  report  for  1919  mentions  a  revised 
Bulgarian  Bible,  nearly  ready  for  the  press. 

Some  years  ago,  it  was  estimated  that  Slovenian  was 
spoken  by  1,500,000,  of  whom  1,300,000  inhabited 
southern  Austria.  As  early  as  1555  we  find  Matthew's 
Gospel  in  Slovene;  in  1558,  the  Gospels  and  the 
Acts,  and  in  1584,  the  Slovene  Bible,  editio  princeps. 
There  is  a  Hungaro-Slovene  Testament  and  Psalms 
for  75,000  Slovenes  in  Hungary,  their  New  Testament 
in  1771,  apparently  reprinted  in  1817.  The  report  for 
1915  announced  that  the  complete  Slovene  Bible  was 
published  and  added  for  the  first  time  to  the  Bible 
Society's  list. 

As  to  the  interesting  remnant  of  the  Wends,  they  are 
112,000  German  subjects  inhabiting  a  district  along 
the  river  Spree,  formerly  known  as  Lusatia,  now 
divided  between  Prussia  and  Saxony.  They  all  belong 
to  the  Evangelical  Lutheran  Confession,  except  about 
12,000  who  are  Roman  Catholics.  The  term  "Wend" 


is  the  appellation  given  them  by  their  German  neigh 
bors,  but  they  call  themselves  "Serbs,"  and  this  name 
becomes  in  Latin,  "Sorabus."  Hence  German  phi 
lologists  call  this  language  "Sorbisch,"  and  English 
scholars  refer  to  it  as  "Sorb"  or  "Serbian."  The 
Upper  Wends  are  77,000  in  Prussia  and  Saxon  Lusatia, 
and  the  Lower  Wends  have  35,000  in  Prussian  Lusatia. 
The  B.  F.  B.  S.  price  list,  1915,  had  a  Testament  and 
Psalms  in  Upper  Wend. 

In  Polish  the  earliest  versions  are  Ecclesiastes,  1522, 
the  New  Testament,  1552,  1553,  and  1556,  and  the 
Radziw^ll  Bible  of  1563,  bearing  the  name  of  a  noble 
Reformed  family;  besides  the  Roman  Catholic  Polish 
New  Testament,  1593,  and  Bible,  1599,  of  Jacob  Wujek 
at  Cracow.  The  B.  F.  B.  S.  colporteurs  circulate  the 
latter  as  well  as  the  standard  Bible,  of  course  without 
Catholic  notes. 

In  1912  the  publication  of  some  tentative  transla 
tions  for  Slovaks  was  announced,  three  of  the  Gospels; 
and  the  price  list  for  1915  contained  a  Slovak  New 

History  ascribes  the  earliest  Bohemian  translation 
of  Scriptures  to  Cyril  and  Methodius,  perhaps  A.D.  860. 
This  was  revised  by  John  Huss  (1373-1415).  The 
editio  princeps  of  the  New  Testament  is  dated 
1475,  and  that  of  the  whole  Bible,  1488.  These  were 
versions  from  the  Vulgate.  A  century  later  the  United 
Brethren  appointed  a  committee  to  translate  the  Bible 
from  the  original  tongues.  This  version  was  printed 
in  1593  at  Kralitz  Castle  and  has  since  been  known  as 
the  Kralicka  or  Kralitz  Bible,  a  great  literary  monu 
ment  of  the  Bohemian  language.  The  B.  F.  B.  S. 
report  for  1912  adds,  that  for  many  years  Pastor 
Jan  Karafiat,  of  Prague,  has  been  comparing  this 
version  with  the  Hebrew  and  Greek  texts,  and  noting 
more  exact  renderings  of  the  original.  Though  delayed 


by  the  War,  Mr.  Karafiat's  revised  Bohemian  Bible 
has  been  published,  and  copies  have  lately  arrived 
in  America. 


From  the  long  list  of  letters  commending  Pittsburgh 
Presbytery's  exhibit,  two  additional  messages  are 
given  here,  one  from  Dr.  W.  O.  Elterich,  Presbyterian 
missionary  of  Chefoo,  China,  the  other  from  Dr.  C.  C. 
Hays,  of  Johnstown,  Pennsylvania,  a  former  moderator 
of  the  Synod  of  Pennsylvania: 

Dr.  Elterich:  "It  was  a  great  pleasure  to  me  to  attend 
recently  the  Foreign  Missions  meeting  of  the  Presby 
tery  of  Pittsburgh  held  in  the  First  Presbyterian 
Church.  I  was  exceedingly  interested  in  the  exhibit, 
the  history  of  the  work  done  among  the  foreigners  of 
this  region,  and  in  the  performances  of  the  young 
women  from  the  Coraopolis  Bible  Training  School.  I 
doubt  if  there  is  another  presbytery  in  our  Church  in 
this  country  which  can  make  such  a  fine  showing.  To 
a  foreign  missionary  like  myself  who  has  been  in  China 
for  many  years,  this  work  has  especially  appealed.  I 
feel  that  the  Presbytery  of  Pittsburgh  has  found  the 
most  sensible  and  effective  way  of  dealing  with  the 
problem  of  evangelizing  the  European  foreign  popula 
tion  in  this  country.  The  selection  and  training  of 
foreign  workers  with  an  efficient  foreign  superintendent 
is  the  method  which  has  made  foreign  missions  such  a 
success  in  non-Christian  lands.  It  stands  to  reason 
that  the  same  principles  applied  and  adapted  to  the 
work  for  foreigners  in  this  land  are  bound  to  be  suc 
cessful,  and  this  work  of  the  Pittsburgh  Presbytery  is 
a  striking  example  of  the  same. 

"In  view  of  the  millions  in  Europe  who  are  coming 
to  our  shores  as  fast  as  they  can  get  over,  all  churches 
and  denominations  should  seriously  consider  how  to 


handle  this  multitude  to  make  them  Christian  citizens 
of  our  Christian  Republic.  Pittsburgh  Presbytery  is 
an  example  and  model  as  to  how  this  work  can  be  done. 
May  God's  richest  blessing  rest  upon  the  efforts  of 
your  committee  and  fellow  workers  who  are  doing 
this  work." 

Dr.  Hays:  "It  was  a  fine  thing  for  Pittsburgh  Pres 
bytery  to  set  apart  a  day  for  the  consideration  of 
its  foreign  work  and  I  took  great  pleasure  in  calling 
the  attention  of  the  Synod  of  Pennsylvania  to  what  the 
presbytery  is  doing.  I  was  greatly  impressed  with 
the  interest  manifested  on  your  special  day.  The  large 
attendance,  including  many  like  myself  from  outside 
your  own  presbytery,  was  itself  an  evidence  of  the 
success  of  your  work  throughout  many  years.  The 
exhibit  showing  work  done,  buildings  in  operation,  and 
the  number  and  quality  of  teachers  employed,  was  a 
most  effective  object  lesson.  No  one  can  question  that 
the  work  among  foreigners  is  to-day  the  great  work  of 
Pittsburgh  Presbytery." 


We  now  follow  this  itinerary  from  Poland  to  the 
region  of  Volhynia  in  Russia,  where  there  are  about 
50,000  Bohemians,  including  a  Reformed  element. 
First  we  note  the  village  of  Kupicev,  near  the  cele 
brated  fort  of  Brest-Li  to  vsk,  and  Kovel.  It  is  seven 
miles  from  its  train  station,  Holoby.  Mr.  Holub,  a 
Presbyterian  of  Coraopolis,  Pennsylvania,  was  married 
in  Kupicev.  One  half  of  this  village  is  Russian,  the 
other  half  Bohemian,  and  they  are  in  great  contrast. 
These  are  comparatively  new  settlers,  not  of  two 
centuries  ago,  but  since  1870.  When  the  famous 
Bohemian  historian,  Palacky,  and  his  son-in-law, 
Rieger,  visited  Russia,  at  a  national  convention  in 
Moscow,  they  recommended  that  Bohemians  emigrate 


to  Russia  in  preference  to  America.  There  is  a  Re 
formed  Bohemian  school  there,  and  they  hold  their 
meetings  in  it,  as  their  brethren  do  in  some  other 
places  where  there  is  no  church.  The  Russians  have 
an  Orthodox  Church.  A  cantor  supplies  the  Reformed 
congregation,  and  once  a  year,  a  Polish  pastor  from 
Vilna  who  has  learned  Bohemian  to  some  extent, 
makes  them  a  visit,  as  he  does  for  Cesky  Borjatin. 

Cesky  Borjatin,  the  next  place  visited,  is  two  miles 
from  Luck,  and  has  a  fine  Bohemian  Reformed  Church, 
with  about  five  hundred  souls,  not  counting  some  in 
surrounding  villages.  These  are  more  cultured,  and 
have  more  means  than  their  brethren  in  some  other 
centers  just  described.  The  soil  is  rich,  yielding  good 
crops  of  hops.  The  Bohemians  suffered  in  the  War. 
When  an  Austrian  army  captured  the  place,  naturally 
they  welcomed  Bohemian  soldiers  who  were  in  their 
ranks.  The  Russians  recaptured  it  and  proceeded 
to  punish  Bohemian  civilians  as  traitors.  The  worthy 
Reformed  curator,  Opocensky,  was  imprisoned,  and 
for  some  time  in  danger  of  execution,  but  later  was 
released  by  the  revolutionists.  Another  good  worker 
is  Joseph  Baloun,  also  Janata,  an  elder,  efficient  in 
their  church  and  in  Sunday-school  work.  Baloun's 
son  also  had  his  escapes  in  war,  eventually  engaging  in 
Y.  M.  C.  A.  work  in  Brno. 

The  Russian  Government  had  an  idea  that  Bohemians 
were  inclined  to  be  Hussites;  and  while  it  did  not  favor 
Polish  Roman  Catholic  churches,  it  was  willing  to 
encourage  a  Hussite  movement,  supposing  that  this 
would  finally  become  Greek  Orthodox.  Accordingly 
they  supported  three  Bohemian  Catholic  priests, 
married  men,  who  were  accepted  as  Hussites.  In 
practice,  according  to  policy,  in  one  community  these 
would  conduct  a  Reformed  service,  in  another  a 
Catholic  service,  and  elsewhere  a  Greek  Orthodox 


service.  In  fact,  they  were  not  perfectly  agreed,  one 
preferring  a  Hussite  organization,  another  the  Old 
Catholic,  while  the  third  was  undecided.  Yet  this 
peculiar  style  of  Church  unity  did  not  appeal  to 
Russian  authorities,  who  abandoned  their  Hussite 
experiment,  and  decreed  that  all  these  Bohemian  set 
tlers  must  become  Orthodox.  Some  Bohemian  Ortho 
dox  churches  still  survive.  But  the  Bohemian  Re 
formed,  deprived  of  their  church  and  school,  made 
protests.  Later  on,  the  czar  became  ill,  and  prayers 
everywhere  were  made  for  his  recovery.  Seizing  such 
an  opportunity,  the  Reformed  asked  that  they  too 
might  assemble  for  prayer,  and  this  was  granted. 
After  the  czar  passed  away,  and  the  new  czar  took  the 
throne,  a  brave  petitioner,  risking  arrest,  fell  on  his 
knees  before  him  with  a  petition.  The  czar  graciously 
received  him,  and  at  last  granted  by  a  ukase  religious 
freedom  to  the  Reformed  Bohemians.  Mr.  Prudky 
considered  their  Church  life  to  be  of  a  good  type.  They 
greatly  desired  a  Bohemian  pastor  for  themselves  and 
the  neighboring  villages,  and  this  occasioned  another 
journey  later  on  for  Mr.  Prudky  to  the  Reformed 
Synod  of  Vilna.  Mr.  Prudky  met  one  of  the  priests 
referred  to,  Kaspar,  still  Orthodox,  no  longer  able  to 
conduct  a  school  as  he  had  done  for  some  time.  He 
also  met  in  Cesky  Borjatin  the  widow  of  another  of 
the  priestly  trio,  Hrdlicka.  In  this  place  there  is  a 
Bohemian  Orthodox  school,  with  an  Orthodox  teacher, 
and  the  Reformed  children,  as  it  is  a  public  school,  are 
in  attendance. 

Mr.  Prudky  next  went  to  Michaelovka,  near  Rovno. 
In  that  region  is  the  series  of  fortresses,  Dubno,  Luck, 
and  Rovno.  He  held  three  meetings,  morning,  after 
noon,  and  night,  taking  most  of  the  day.  The  mayor 
is  a  religious  man.  Here  the  Reformed  have  four 
hundred  souls,  and  the  Baptists  a  small  number.  The 


cause  of  temperance,  or  as  they  call  it,  ''abstinence," 
has  made  gains  in  that  locality.  The  people  have  not 
the  advantages  of  the  culture  and  the  soil  which  belong 
to  those  of  Cesky  Borjatin.  The  whole  village  belongs 
to  a  Polish  nobleman.  The  Bohemians  are  renters, 
and  the  ground  is  not  so  well  cared  for  as  if  they  owned 
it.  In  this  village,  also  in  the  next,  of  this  tour,  the 
people  were  originally  from  Zelov,  hence  from  an 
emigration  of  1620,  and  later.  This  next  place  is 
Hlupanin,  with  only  eighty  souls  of  the  Reformed 
Church,  but  two  or  three  hundred  Baptists,  who  also 
have  a  resident  minister.  Mr.  Prudky  called  upon 
him,  and  he  and  his  people  attended  Mr.  Prudky 's 
service,  which  was  held,  as  the  Reformed  here  must  do, 
in  a  private  house.  This  ends  the  story  for  Volhynia, 
so  far  as  it  concerns  Bohemian  Reformed  churches. 
In  Hlupanin,  far  from  any  educational  center,  is  a 
layman  with  a  fine  library,  a  man  well  versed  in  history 
and  intelligent  in  theological  discussions. 

From  Volhynia,  Mr.  Prudky 's  tour  led  him  to  the. 
Kherson  Government  over  Russian  steppes,  without 
trees,  wood,  or  coal,  first  to  the  village  of  Alexandrowka, 
over  a  mile  from  Birzula,  which  is  the  junction  of 
railroads  connecting  the  important  cities  of  Kiev  and 
Ekaterinoslav.  Their  houses  are  neat,  but  primitive, 
the  walls  made  of  a  mixture  of  earth  and  straw,  repaired 
every  year.  Dr.  Losa  has  seen  such  houses  in  Canada, 
constructed  by  emigrants  from  that  part  of  Russia. 
These  Bohemians  built  their  houses  in  common,  then 
distributed  them  by  lot.  They  use  agricultural 
machines,  and  rotate  crops  by  changing  a  district  of 
pasture  to  farm  land,  and  the  reverse,  each  year. 
For  fuel  they  use  a  mixture  of  straw  and  manure,  which 
some  American  westerners  have  called  "Kansas  coal." 
They  raise  wheat,  corn,  and  sunflowers,  for  the  people 
eat  the  seeds  of  the  sunflower  as  Americans  eat  peanuts. 


The  soil  is  very  good,  but  the  whole  place  is  owned  by 
a  Russian  nobleman;  and  as  they  must  move  away  in 
a  few  years,  they  have  no  inducement  to  plant  trees, 
evidently  a  wretched  system  for  so  good  a  country. 
In  a  later  journey,  Mr.  Prudky  observed  that  some 
soldiers,  veterans  of  the  war  with  Japan,  owned  small 
tracts  allotted  to  them.  Many  farmers  own  fifty 
horses,  and  more  than  forty  cows.  There  is  no  church, 
but  a  school  used  also  as  a  meeting  place.  The  Bohe 
mian  Reformed  have  three  hundred  souls,  and  there  are 
a  few  Baptists.  Mr.  Prudky  afterwards  sent  them  a 
teacher  who  is  now  in  the  United  States,  an  ordained 
minister,  Mr.  Drobny.  Originally  these,  too,  were 
from  Zelov. 

About  twenty  miles  from  this  village,  Mr.  Prudky 
saw  Bohemka,  newly  built,  a  larger  place,  "like  a 
swallow's  nest,"  he  says,  and  having  a  fine  view  over 
the  steppe.  The  Reformed  have  five  hundred  souls. 
They  meet  in  the  school,  located  in  the  center,  where  a 
flag  is  displayed  at  the  time  of  service.  Stundists  are 
not  far  away,  but  Mr.  Prudky  was  not  able  to  visit 
them.  He  held  three  services  on  Sunday,  and  states 
that  they  are  a  good,  spiritual  people,  loving  their 
Bibles  and  their  hymns.  In  these  towns  all  can  read, 
though  not  all  can  write,  but  they  are  surrounded  by 
an  illiterate  population. 

The  last  part  of  this  journey  brought  Mr.  Prudky  to 
two  groups  of  families,  all  originally  from  Zelov.  Four 
brothers,  all  with  large  families,  live  in  Ljubasevka, 
which  is  a  train  station  between  Birzula  and  Ekateri- 
noslav.  They  own  their  land,  and  have  good  buildings, 
vineyards,  fine  grapes,  vegetables,  and  flowers.  Here 
also  were  trees.  For  their  children  they  have  a  Bohe 
mian  governess,  instructing  them  in  the  Bible,  cate 
chism,  and  the  like.  During  three  days,  in  forenoons 
and  afternoons,  they  assembled  to  hear  Bible  expositions 


from  Mr.  Prudky,  and  as  Baptists  and  Stundists  were 
in  their  neighborhood,  they  had  special  questions  to 
ask  concerning  their  dealings  with  them. 

Farther  on,  in  the  hamlet  of  Zachovka,  were  three 
families,  two  of  whom  rent  the  ground,  and  one  fur 
nishes  labor.  These  have  a  few  trees,  a  large  planta 
tion  of  watermelons,  also  their  gardens,  and  their 
primitive  houses  of  earth  and  straw.  A  patriarchal, 
intelligent  man,  who  has  a  library  with  religious  books, 
the  father  of  one  of  the  families,  lives  with  them.  Here 
for  the  first  time  Mr.  Prudky  read  an  evangelical  relig 
ious  paper  in  Russian,  published  in  Petrograd,  the 
Evangelical  Christian,  copies  of  which  he  has  seen 
since.  This  is  interesting,  as  it  shows  the  survival  of 
publications  from  the  Pashkof  movement,  to  which  it 
really  belongs.  Two  meetings  were  held  here,  and 
people  came  sixteen  miles  from  Bohemka  to  visit  them. 
Mr.  Prudky  finished  this  tour  with  a  brief  visit  again  in 
Bohemka.  For  some  years  these  Bohemka  people 
had  lived  in  the  Samara  Government  on  the  Volga, 
where  they  had  bought  ground;  but  they  had  no  rain 
for  two  years,  and  had  to  abandon  the  region.  Some 
of  them  had  gone  from  Samara  to  Siberia  where  they 
founded  Novopavlovska  in  the  Akmulinska  oblast  or 
province.  They  own  their  ground,  and  have  a  school 
for  their  meetings.  They  desired  Mr.  Prudky  to  visit 
them,  but  this  would  have  involved  a  trip  of  fourteen 
days  by  train,  and  two  hundred  miles  farther  than  their 
nearest  station,  which  was  impossible.  And  Mr. 
Prudky  did  not  have  time  to  visit  the  Stundists  of  the 
region  at  a  period  when  they  suffered  persecutions. 

During  two  days  in  June,  1909,  Mr.  Prudky  attended 
a  Reformed  Synod  in  Vilna,  his  second  journey  in 
Russia.  There  wrere  two  Reformed  synods  then  in 
Russia,  the  one  of  Vilna,  the  other  of  Warsaw.  There 
is  some  interchange  of  visiting  delegates  between  these 


synods,  Bohemian  pastors  are  in  the  Warsaw  Synod; 
but  Kupicev,  Cesky  Borjatin,  Michaelovka,  and  some 
others  send  their  representatives  each  year  to  the 
Vilna  Synod.  On  this  occasion,  two  were  sent  from 
Cesky  Borjatin,  earnestly  seeking  a  pastor.  A  fine 
Polish  f nobleman  presided;  and  Rev.  Fastrzembski 
was  the  superintendent.  Mr.  Prudky  was  cordially 
received.  The  synod  still  has  some  endowments,  or 
had  at  that  time;  it  was  willing  to  assist  Cesky  Borjatin 
financially,  and  it  made  recommendations  for  a  pastor. 
But  difficulties  intervened.  Such  a  pastor  must  be  a 
Russian  subject,  and  must  pass  an  examination  in 
four  of  the  eight  classes  or  grades  of  a  Russian  Gym 
nasium,  including  a  knowledge  of  the  Russian  language. 
Hence  the  Russian  Government  refused  permission, 
and  this  charge  has  had  no  pastor  since  1909 !  No  such 
restrictions  applied  to  Zelov,  where  an  Austrian  subject 
might  serve  as  pastor.  It  seemed  to  be  Russian  policy 
then  to  encourage  Bohemian  churches  in  Polish  terri 
tory,  but  to  discourage  them  in  purely  Russian  regions. 
But  since  Poland  gained  independence,  Poland  has 
closed  Bohemian  schools,  which  still  are  allowed  in 
Russia,  for  instance,  in  Volhynia. 

The  third  journey  of  this  series  was  in  1911,  into 
German  Silesia,  now  Poland,  though  west  of  Breslau 
it  is  Germany  still.  Husinec  is  now  in  Germany  near 
Breslau,  and  has  a  Bohemian  Reformed  church,  but 
no  school,  as  the  children  are  forced  to  attend  German 
schools.  They  had  preaching  in  Bohemian,  and  a 
German  service  once  in  three  weeks,  though  invariably 
the  hymns  were  in  Bohemian.  The  Bohemian  pastor 
then  would  accept  no  help  from  Mr.  Prudky,  so  the 
latter  held  no  service  there,  but  visited  the  people, 
the  elder  Bohemians  in  villages  near  by,  especially 
Upper,  Middle,  and  Lower  Podiebrad.  The  people 
here  speek  the  classic  Bohemian  of  the  Kralicka  Bible. 


Among  the  Germans  they  are  formal,  but  among 
themselves  familiar;  with  the  former  it  is  "Sie,"  and 
with  their  Bohemian  brethren  it  is  "du."  They  are 
prosperous,  and  in  the  markets  their  produce  has 
the  highest  reputation.  These  Reformed  people  number 
more  than  six  hundred,  and  they  have  a  fine  church 

Some  time  after  this  visit,  the  pastor  died,  and  they 
called  a  minister  from  Pilsen.  He  came  and  preached 
with  great  acceptance  to  the  older  people,  but  the 
German  Government  refused  its  permission,  and  sent 
instead  a  German  minister  of  Huguenot  ancestry,  who 
had  learned  some  Bohemian  in  Friedrichstabor.  This 
was  some  three  years  after  Mr.  Prudky's  visit.  The 
people  protested  against  having  a  German  pastor 
and  a  man  of  liberal  theological  tendencies.  Recently 
the  German  Government,  still  pursuing  its  Germanizing 
policy,  sent  German  hymn  books  for  their  services.  To 
the  older  Bohemians  their  language  is  sacred,  and  the 
opinion  they  expressed  to  Mr.  Prudky  was  that  as  their 
children  lost  their  Bohemian  language,  they  would  be 
exposed  to  German  influences  and  also  lose  their  faith. 
For  the  benefit  of  Bohemians  in  German  regions,  a 
famous  book  of  the  great  Bohemian  educator  and 
reformer,  John  Amos  Comenius  (Komensky),  has  been 
printed  in  Gothic  type,-  and  used  with  excellent  effect. 
It  is,  "The  Will  of  the  Dying  Mother"— "in  which  she 
divides  among  her  sons  and  heirs  the  treasures  entrusted 
to  her  by  God."  This  message,  issued  in  the  middle  of 
the  seventeenth  century,  at  the  close  of  the  great 
Thirty  Years'  War,  in  which  Bohemian  liberties  were 
lost,  is  a  work  that  stirs  the  Bohemian  heart  by  its 

The  next  locality  visited  was  Friedrichsgratz  (Bed- 
richuv  Hradec)  near  Oppeln  (Opoli)  where  there  was  a 
Slovak  pastor,  using  Slovak  and  German.  The  German 


Government  supports  Germanizing  pastors.  He  had  a 
diploma  from  the  German  Government  commending 
the  progress  of  his  school  and  church.  That  church  is 
a  loyal  Reformed  Church;  he  sought  to  make  it  Luth 
eran.  Consistent  Reformed  people  have  a  distaste  for 
the  use  of  the  cross  and  for  pictures  in  the  church. 
Mr.  Prudky  remarked  to  him  that  there  was  one 
"picture"  that  he  missed,  which  was  a  Bohemian  Bible 
in  that  church!  The  children  were  being  Germanized, 
as  he  observed  in  one  family  which  he  visited.  He  had 
no  opportunity  to  conduct  a  Bohemian  service  on  a 
week  day,  when  people  could  be  gathered  together 
only  with  difficulty.  This  church  has  over  a  thousand 
souls.  The  homes  of  the  people  are  neat.  One  old 
man  told  Mr.  Prudky  that  he  did  not  expect  the 
Bohemian  tongue  to  die  out  in  that  community;  but 
Mr.  Prudky  did  not  share  his  hope. 

Like  a  true  Bohemian,  Mr.  Prudky  was  much  inter 
ested  in  a  visit  to  Lesno  (Lissa),  near  Posen,  which  has 
a  library  and  a  museum,  with  manuscripts  and  memo 
rials  of  Comenius,  who  for  years  administered  the 
Gymnasium  and  the  church  there  after  leaving 
Bohemia  during  the  Thirty  Years'  War.  The  pastor 
of  the  German  Reformed  church  was  a  good  historian 
of  Comenius.  One  of  the  treasures  is  a  sacramental 
cup  of  gold,  adorned  with  jewels,  brought  by  a  Bohe 
mian  nobleman.  There  Mr.  Prudky  met  Rev. 
Kurnatowski  of  Kovno  province,  a  Reformed  Polish 
pastor;  and  as  a  result  of  their  interview  there  was 
held  later  in  Prague  a  conference  of  evangelical  Slav 
workers  of  several  nationalities. 

Seen  next  in  this  tour  was  Friedrichstabor  (Bed- 
richuv  Tabor)  with  its  villages,  Cernin  among  them, 
in  German  Poland,  near  Bralin,  a  congregation  with  a 
total  of  twelve  hundred  souls.  Here  was  the  pastor 
above  mentioned,  who  was  afterwards  transferred  to 


Husinec.  At  the  time  he  was  friendly,  and  requested 
Mr.  Prudky  to  preach,  hoping  for  something  to  check 
a  movement  about  which  he  was  concerned,  toward  a 
so-called  "Pentecostal"  development,  also  some  Baptist 
innovations.  Old  people  were  present  who  could  not 
speak  German,  who  wept  when  they  heard  the  gospel 
once  more,  after  years  of  privation,  in  their  native 
tongue.  Later  on  the  church  was  for  two  years  without 
a  pastor,  and  the  elders  wrote  asking  Mr.  Prudky  to 
visit  them.  He  asked  the  consent  of  the  German  pastor 
of  Bralin,  who  sent  a  characteristic  German  response — 
that  he  did  not  wish  to  see  him  in  that  part  of  the 
country,  and  that  he  would  oppose  him!  So  he  could 
not  return  there.  On  this  tour  he  revisited  Zelov,  and 
some  other  places  above  mentioned. 

The  fourth  and  fifth  journeys  were  in  a  different 
direction,  to  Croatia  and  Slavonia,  by  way  of  Vienna 
and  Zagreb.  He  confessed  that  these  travels  were  not 
so  enjoyable  as  those  in  Russia;  for  he  was  impressed 
with  the  difference  in  an  emigration  from  spiritual 
motives,  such  as  could  be  found  there,  and  an  emigra 
tion  induced  by  material  gains.  He  did  not  see  such 
spirituality  in  those  colonies  as  in  Russia.  He  noticed 
a  peculiarity  in  the  country,  that  the  population  was 
mixed  to  some  extent  as  in  America — here  a  Croatian 
village,  there  a  Serbian,  another  Italian,  another 
German,  and  so  on.  First  he  saw  Uljanik  in  Croatia,  a 
small  town,  where  the  Bohemian  church  and  manse 
were  in  one  building,  a  congregation  of  some  two 
hundred  souls. 

Next  he  visited  a  congregation  of  some  three  hundred 
souls  in  Herzegovac.  They  had  no  church  building, 
but  worshiped  in  a  public  school.  The  character  of  the 
community  may  be  inferred  from  the  fact  that  they 
gladly  arranged  with  a  German  minister  to  supply 
them,  one  who  spoke  Croatian,  inasmuch  as  he  offered 


to  do  so  without  salary!  Mr.  Prudky  considered  the 
congregation  to  be  in  a  low  state,  materialistic,  indiffer 
ent  as  to  whether  services  were  held  in  German  or 

The  last  place  visited  in  Croatia  was  BrsTjanica, 
where  there  were  some  ten  Reformed  families,  most  of 
whom  had  removed  from  Uljanik.  Although  it  was 
far  off,  it  could  be  reached  by  their  horses,  so  that  they 
could  go  there.  They  assembled  for  Mr.  Prudky's 
service  in  a  private  house,  and  were  thankful  for  it, 
showing  a  better  spirit  than  those  in  Herzegovac. 

The  last  place  in  his  journeys  about  Slavdom  was 
Pletenica  in  Slavonia  near  Bosnia.  (There  is  no 
Bohemian  Reformed  Church  in  Bosnia.)  Church  and 
manse  here  are  one  house,  and  a  German  minister 
supplied  them  who  could  preach  in  Croatian,  the 
hymns  also  being  in  that  language.  Here  he  met  that 
remarkable  convert,  Kujinek,  their  treasurer,  the  fruit 
of  Dr.  Losa's  mission.  On  his  fifth  tour,  revisiting  this 
region,  he  brought  them  a  Bohemian  missionary,  a 

This  fourth  journey  had  an  additional  excursion. 
From  Pletenica  Mr.  Prudky  went  to  Belgrade  (Be'leh- 
rad),  capital  of  Serbia,  spending  two  days  seeing 
Mohammedan  mosques  and  other  places  of  interest. 
Here  there  is  a  small  evangelical  congregation,  mostly 
German,  with  a  church  building,  a  school,  and  a 
parsonage.  The  pastor  was  friendly,  a  Croatian,  a 
converted  Romish  priest,  who  had  studied  in  Bielefeld, 
in  Germany,  and  whose  school  was  German,  though 
emphasizing  the  study  of  Serbian.  His  preaching  was 
in  German.  This  is  the  only  evangelical  church  in 
Belgrade,  or  so  far  as  Mr.  Prudky  learned,  in  all  Serbia, 
only  scattered  groups  of  evangelicals  being  found  else 
where.  Good  work  has  been  done  in  the  colportage  of 
the  British  and  Foreign  Bible  Society.  This  church, 


apart  from  recognition  by  State  laws,  had  direct 
support  from  the  Serbian  king  and  his  prime  minister. 
On  New  Year's  Day,  the  pastor  was  regularly  and 
formally  received  by  the  king,  and  in  the  church  was  a 
chair  as  a  seat  of  honor  for  visitors  from  the  court. 
The  Slav  Mohammedans  have  lost  all  Slav  character 
istics,  are  classed  as  Turks,  and  differ  from  other 
Mohammedans  only  in  being  monogamists.  Relatively 
they  are  not  numerous  in  Belgrade,  but  abound  in 

After  a  trip  of  six  hours  on  the  Danube,  he  arrived 
at  O'  Moldawa,  a  station  on  that  river.  He  had  written 
to  a  pastor  in  this  part  of  southern  Hungary,  who 
replied  that  he  was  in  charge  and  had  no  need  of  help 
from  Bohemia  or  any  visitor  from  there.  He  sent 
gendarmes  to  investigate.  They  delayed  Mr.  Prudky 
for  about  an  hour,  but  could  not  hinder  his  errand,  as 
his  passports  were  perfectly  in  order.  Taking  a  car 
riage,  he  went  eight  miles  up  into  the  mountains, 
with  views  of  fine  scenery,  as  the  famous  "Iron  Gates" 
of  the  Danube  were  not  far  off.  Bohemians  had  had 
their  colonies,  some  six  villages,  in  this  region  for  a 
hundred  years.  His  purpose  was  to  visit  the  only 
evangelical  village  of  the  group,  Szensilona,  where  the 
Reformed  have  four  hundred  souls,  and  the  Congre- 
gationalists,  who  came  later,  a  hundred  souls.  The 
Reformed  have  a  fine  church,  no  Sunday  school,  but 
a  public  school.  The  mayor,  Cermak,  received  him 
cordially.  The  pastor,  whom  he  met  in  the  market 
place  was  very  unfriendly.  He  spoke  only  Magyar, 
which  Mr.  Prudky  did  not  understand.  He  read  his 
sermons  in  Bohemian,  but  the  people  could  not  under 
stand  him;  as  for  his  personal  characteristics  he  was 
wholly  unacceptable  to  them.  He,  too,  would  have 
prevented  this  visit,  if  possible,  by  summoning  gen 
darmes.  Mr.  Prudky  met  a  few  of  the  Congregation- 


alists  in  their  missionary's  house.  Altogether,  his  stay 
in  the  village  was  only  about  two  hours.  He  never 
revisited  Hungary. 

A  note  may  be  added  as  to  Zagreb  (Agram),  the 
important  capital  of  Croatia,  a  university  town,  with 
more  or  less  than  100,000  inhabitants.  On  his  fourth 
journey,  Mr.  Prudky  visited  a  Reformed  family  pos 
sessing  a  fine  estate  near  the  city.  A  few  other  Bohe 
mian  families  are  scattered  in  the  region.  They  go 
occasionally  to  Zagreb,  though  the  evangelical  church 
there  is  German.  Their  pastor  must  also  know  Croatian, 
and  the  church  records  must  be  in  that  language. 
Germans  hold  the  fort,  and  expect  all  Reformed  or 
Lutheran,  all  of  the  Augsburg  or  of  the  Helvetic  Con 
fessions,  to  come  to  them,  no  matter  whether  they  are 
Bohemians  or  of  other  nationalities.  So  it  was  for 
merly  in  Bohemia  and  Moravia.  After  the  beginnings 
of  toleration,  the  Bohemian  Reformed  congregations 
were  all  rural.  German  influences,  even  Protestant, 
opposed  their  coming  into  towns,  as  a  Bohemianizing 
scheme.  After  1880  (earlier  than  that  in  Prague),  they 
did  organize  Reformed  congregations  in  cities.  (Brno, 
1884;  Olomouc,  1898,  et  cetera.)  So  when  the  Zagreb 
pastor  died,  and  Pastor  Gerza,  who  had  been  pastor 
in  Uljanik  ten  years  ago,  visited  there  in  1917,  of 
course  the  Germans  did  not  call  him  to  be  their  pastor 
in  Zagreb. 

Prochazka,  the  deacon  Mr.  Prudky  brought  with 
him  to  Slavonia  on  his  fifth  journey  in  1913,  did  good 
work,  but  in  two  years  he  died.  During  the  War,  in 
1917,  Pastor  Gerza  went  from  Bohemia  to  visit  all 
these  fields  of  the  Bohemians  in  Croatia  and  Slavonia, 
finding  all  pastorless,  sheep  without  a  shepherd.  Mr. 
Prudky  adds  to  the  sad  picture  their  materialistic 
neglect  of  education.  In  the  poor  public  schools, 
sometimes  overcrowded,  the  Bohemian  children,  not 


knowing  Croatian,  are  at  a  disadvantage  and  learn 
little.  He  saw  a  Bohemian  boy  of  thirteen  years, 
unable  to  read  or  write,  which  would  be  rare  in 
Bohemia  itself. 


The  Kalich  ("Cup")  or  Church  Yearbook  of  the 
Bohemian  Brethren  for  1920  gives  statistics  for  the 
Reformed  and  Lutheran  Bohemian  churches  separately, 
since  their  merger  has  not  been  completed  in  detail. 
A  "seniorat"  corresponds  somewhat  to  our  presbytery. 
Their  synod,  in  February,  1921,  planned  to  divide 
Bohemia  and  Moravia  into  twelve  seniorats.  In 
Bohemia,  this  Yearbook  reports,  of  the  former  Reformed 
bodies,  vin  the  seniorat  of  Prague,  15  churches,  23,189 
souls;  Caslav  seniorat,  15  churches,  16,578  souls,  and 
without  repeating,  corresponding  figures:  Chrudim, 
15,  and  19,957;  Pode"brad,  17,  and  20,495.  Thus  these 
four  seniorats  have  over  80,000  souls.  And  of  the 
former  Lutherans  in  Bohemia,  of  parishes,  15,  souls, 
14,080.  In  Moravia  the  western  seniorat,  18,  and 
27,362;  the  eastern,  10,  and  16,245;  and  the  Vsetin 
seniorat,  13,  and  19,816,  or  a  total  of  over  63,000  souls. 
Besides,  there  are  "Moravian  Brethren"  supported 
by  those  of  that  name  in  Germany,  with  six  congrega 
tions,  1331  souls,  mostly  Bohemian.  It  is  now 
expected  that  German  support  will  be  withdrawn,  and 
these  too,  merged  in  this  united  body. 

Of  the  officers  of  the  synod,  the  names  of  some 
leaders  may  be  mentioned:  President,  Rev.  Josef 
Soucek,  of  Prague;  vice  president,  Rev.  Ferdinand 
Hrejsa,  who  is  also  a  superintendent,  of  Prague; 
treasurer,  Ferdinand  Kavka,  and  secretary,  Dr. 
Josef  Krai,  both  of  Prague.  Of  the  synod's  committee, 
Dr.  Ferdinand  Cisar,  superintendent  for  Moravia,  at 
Klobouky,  Moravia;  and  of  the  substitute  com- 


mittee,  Rev.  Francis  Prudky,  pastor  at  Olomouc, 
Moravia.  These  all  can  read  English  correspondence, 
and  there  are  many  other  pastors  or  workers  besides 
who  can  correspond  in  English. 


John  Amos  Comenius,  famous  as  an  educator  and 
a  reformer,  was  born  in  Moravia,  March  28,  1592,  and 
died  in  Amsterdam,  November  15,  1670.  After  the 
Battle  of  the  White  Mountain,  1620,  he  fled  to  Poland, 
where  in  1632  he  was  elected  bishop  of  the  "Unitas 
Fratrum  Bohemorum,"  or  Bohemian  Brethren,  being 
the  last  bishop  in  the  history  of  that  noble  Christian 
communion.  His  educational  writings  gave  him  honors 
in  Sweden,  and  England  and  a  world- wide  reputation. 
In  1654  he  fled  from  Lesno  or  Lissa  in  Poland,  in  another 
war,  to  Holland,  where  he  spent  the  remainder  of  his 
life.  Among  his  numerous  works  is  one  in  Bohemian, 
not  translated  into  English,  containing  the  remarkable 
prophecy  of  the  future  triumph  of  righteousness  in  his 
country:  "The  Will  of  the  Dying  Mother — In  Which 
She  Distributes  the  Treasures  Which  Were  Granted 
to  Her  by  God."  It  is  rich  hi  quotations  of  Scripture, 
and  its  pathos  stirs  emotion  in  every  true  Bohemian 

It  begins  in  the  legal  phraseology  of  a  will,  with  the 
solemn  utterances  of  a  deathbed  scene.  The  "Dying 
Mother"  has  no  silver  or  gold,  is  in  widowed  circum 
stances,  deprived  of  her  churches  and  her  property, 
but  enriched  with  her  Master's  spiritual  treasures, 
which  she  now  bequeaths  to  her  children  and  to  her 
sisters,  representing  four  classes.  First,  to  the  Bohe 
mian  Brotherhood,  she  gives  parting  instructions.  Some 
of  them  have  strayed  from  their  fellowship,  or  have 
compromised  with  their  enemies.  A  tearful  repentance 
is  her  bequest  to  them.  They  should  turn  to  God  like 


the  Ninevites,  and  return  to  their  first  love.  To  her 
faithful  ones,  she  leaves  the  better  land,  the  hope  of 
eternal  life,  the  white  robes  and  palms  of  the  new 
Jerusalem,  and  the  welcome  voice,  "These  are  they 
which  came  out  of  great  tribulation,  and  have  washed 
their  robes,  and  made  them  white  in  the  blood  of  the 
Lamb."  To  the  Polish  Brotherhood,  really  an  offshoot 
of  the  Bohemian  Brethren,  this  "Mother"  speaks,  as 
to  her  "second  daughter,"  praying  that  no  such  desola 
tion  may  befall  them  as  that  of  Bohemia.  There  were 
those  who  said  they  were  Jews,  but  were  not;  they,  too, 
should  not  have  the  name  of  the  Brotherhood,  while 
they  were  not  of  it.  They  should  remember  their 
origin,  and  should  not  be  a  degenerate,  barren  vineyard. 
They  should  maintain  discipline,  as  many  do  not.  If 
pastors  bring  in  strange  doctrines  from  foreign  coun 
tries,  let  them  beware  lest  the  Church  grow  colder  and 
colder,  many  forsaking  it  (as,  in  fact,  many  Polish 
nobles  did  in  later  times),  and  beware  lest  their  candle 
stick  be  removed  "out  of  its  place."  If  they  should  be 
dispersed  in  foreign  countries,  let  them  serve  Christ 
in  other  evangelical  Churches,  doing  this  in  simplicity: 
"Walk  in  the  good  way  that  I  have  taught  you,  and 
seek  concord  and  peace  in  every  country  where  you 
may  sojourn." 

In  the  course  of  these  farewells,  is  a  parting  word  to 
the  Church  of  Rome,  which  had  been  a  cruel  step 
mother  to  many  of  them;  and  to  it  the  "Dying  Mother" 
bequeaths  her  own  example! 

Then  to  her  beloved  sisters,  first,  to  the  Helvetic 
Brotherhood,  to  whom  John  Calvin  had  been  sent, 
that  he  might  bring  them  as  a  chaste  virgin,  to  Christ, 
the  "Mother"  bids  farewell,  rejoicing  that  this  Brother 
hood  has  discipline;  and  bequeaths  her  wish,  that  they 
may  be  more  and  more  thoroughly  established  upon 
Christ;  that  they  may  abound  in  love,  as  well  as  in 


knowledge;  that  they  may  be  more  reverent,  not  seeking 
by  their  reason  to  pry  too  deeply  into  the  mysteries  of 
God.  Referring  to  various  sects,  some  in  England,  and 
their  dangerous  work,  she  commends  to  her  sister  the 
prayer  of  David,  Ps.  25:21:  "Let  integrity  and 
uprightness  preserve  me." 

Also  she  addresses  her  German  sister,  who  had  been 
her  best  beloved  sister,  but  whose  love  for  her  in 
estrangement  had  grown  cold.  Her  bequest  is  the  wish 
for  more  discipline;  and  for  a  better  understanding  of 
the  doctrine,  "by  faith  alone"  which  had  been  abused, 
to  the  neglect  of  good  wrorks.  Luther's  building  was 
good,  but  unfinished,  and  now  they  are  only  living  in 
its  ruins.  "Having  begun  in  the  Spirit,  are  ye  now 
made  perfect  by  the  flesh?"  It  is  all  in  vain  to 
have  a  mere  knowledge  of  Christ;  they  would  deceive 
themselves,  to  seek  the  consolations  of  the  gospel 
without  observing  the  law  of  love. 

The  "Mother"  then  turns  to  all  Christians,  earnestly 
exhorting  all  to  seek  for  more  mutual  love  and  unity. 
Finally,  she  turns  to  the  Bohemian  nation,  and  to 
Moravia.  "I  turn  first  to  you,  my  native  country, 
and  entrust  to  you  my  treasures."  And  here  is  the 
prophecy  above  mentioned  as  to  the  return  of  righteous 
ness  to  that  land.  Her  parting  wish  is  that  they  may 
love  the  truth  of  God  as  taught  by  John  Huss,  and  that 
they  might  grant  freedom  to  the  truth;  that  they  use 
the  Bible  to  learn  more  of  God,  since  it  has  been  so 
well  translated  from  the  original  languages;  that  they 
maintain  discipline,  without  which  there  could  not  be 
Christian  life;  that  they  be  whole-hearted,  not  dividing 
their  heart  with  the  world;  that  they  retain  their 
Bohemian  language  in  its  classic  purity;  and  that  they 
care  for  the  education  of  youth,  in  which  other  nations 
had  made  progress,  while  in  Bohemia  it  had  been 


"And  what  more  shall  I  say?  I  must  speak  to  you 
as  Jacob  did  to  his  sons,  or  as  Moses  to  his  people: 
'Joseph  is  a  fruitful  bough,  even  a  fruitful  bough  by  a 
well;  whose  branches  run  over  the  wall.  The  archers 
have  sorely  grieved  him,  and  shot  at  him,  and  hated 
him:  But  his  bow  abode  in  strength,  and  the  arms 
of  his  hands  were  made  strong,  by  the  hands  of  the 
Mighty  God  of  Jacob/  Let  Bohemia  live  and  not  die, 
and  let  not  her  men  be  few.  'Bless,  Lord/  her 
'substance,  and  accept  the  work  of  her  'hands:  smite 
through  the  loins  of  them  that  rise  against'  her, 
'and  of  them  that  hate'  her,  'that  they  rise  not  again/ 
'The  eternal  God  is  thy  refuge  and  underneath  are 
the  everlasting  arms:  and  he  shall  thrust  out  the 
enemy  from  before  thee;  and  shall  say,  Destroy  them/ 
'Salvation  belongeth  unto  the  Lord:  thy  blessing 
is  upon  thy  people/  ' 

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